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United States

Population:  307 million, 82 per cent live in urban areas

Political structure:  A Federation of states.  Capital:  Washington D.C.

Economy:  The US has one of the world’s most diverse economies, being a global financial centre as well as a major agricultural producer and manufacturer.  It has a comparatively open economy with a culture of encouraging individual endeavor.  It has the world’s largest financial center and the US dollar is the reserve country of many other nations who hold large amounts of US dollars in their foreign reserves.  The prices of many commodities, such as gold and oil, are set in US dollars so movements in the currency can have a major economic impact on other countries.

The US’ top exports comprise agricultural products, autos, aircraft, industrial supplies, computers, machinery and equipment and consumer goods.  The US runs a persistent trade deficit.  Its largest export markets are Canada, Mexico, China, Japan and Germany.


Updated September, 2009

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