What Are the Top U.S. Exports?

The United States exported $2.3 trillion worth of goods and services in 2017, up more than 5% from $2.2 trillion in the prior year. Between January and July this year, the U.S. exported $963.3 billion worth of goods.

President Donald Trump has consistently called for a reduction in the trade deficit, which increased to $50.1 billion in July from $45.7 billion in June, and his administration's move to impose tariffs on Chinese imports and the subsequent retaliation by the Asian economy has stock market investors on edge.

Here’s a closer look at the United States' export of goods. All figures are based are on U.S. Census Bureau data for 2017.

Transportation equipment was the top commodity exported by the US last year, accounting for almost 18% of the country’s total exports. This category includes aerospace products and parts, motor vehicles, railroad stock, and ships and boats. 

The second largest commodity exported was computer products, including semiconductors used in the production of smartphones, navigational instruments, and audio and video equipment. Collectively, this category accounted for 13% of US exports in 2017. 

Aerospace products were the fourth largest export in 2017. Companies like Boeing (BA) and Lockheed-Martin (LMT) both manufacture products in the United States that are shipped all over the world. Petroleum and coal products are also among the top products exported by the United States. 

Texas was the US’s largest exporter in 2017. Its top commodities included computer and electronic products, petroleum and coal products, and oil and gas. Together, Texas’ exports accounted for 17% of the country’s total exports. California was next in 2017, with its top exports including computer and electronic equipment and transportation equipment and machinery. 

Washington took third place, followed by New York, Illinois, and Michigan. 

And where are American goods being shipped overseas? Canada accounted for the largest percentage of the United States' exports at 18.2%. Mexico was next with 16%, followed by China with 7.7% and Japan 4.4%. United Kingdom and Germany round out the top 6. 

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