News & Analysis

World's Largest Economies

January 18, 2018

World’s Largest Economies

By Klavs Valters
When it comes to the top national economies around the globe, the United States is well ahead of all countries – having the  largest economy by Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The United States generates nearly a quarter of the world’s GDP at $18.6 trillion, that’s around $7 trillion more than China ($11.1 trillion) – the world’s second largest economy. But with other countries around the world starting to show signs of major growth potential, how long before another country overtakes the US?
Top 10 Largest Economies in the World
The top 10 economies are made up from countries from four continents – North America, South America, Asia and Europe. They also make up 66% of the worlds GDP, the rest is made up from the other 185 countries. It is worth pointing out that the US economy is nearly as big as the total GDP of Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, France, India, Italy, Brazil and Canada – combined.

Top 10 Countries by GDP per Capita
Even though the US has the largest economy in the world by total GDP, when you divide the total GDP per person there are several countries in the world that are above the US. It is mainly due to their small population. For example, the US population in 2016 was around 323 million, if you divide that by the total GDP for the same year, it means the GDP is at around $57,000 per capita. Luxembourg has the largest GDP per capita in the world at $100,573, followed by Switzerland at $79,890 and Macau at $73,187 per capita.

Looking into the Future
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) have released its predictions for the most powerful economies in the world by 2030 – “The long view: how will the global economic order change by 2050?”. The report ranked 32 countries by their projected global GDP by purchasing power parity (PPP). PPP is used to determine the income levels in the different countries during a certain timeframe.
It is projected that China will have the largest economy by 2030, growing from $11 trillion to an enormous $38 trillion. The Indonesian economy is expected to grow drastically from around $932 billion to $5 trillion making it the fifth largest economy in the world. Even though the United Kingdom’s economy is expected to grow, other countries such as India, Brazil and Mexico are expected to overtake the world’s fifth largest economy.

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