Connecticut, Pakistan Have Similar Economic Output, Analysis Finds

Connecticut is Pakistan. A review of state-by-state Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data for 2014 matches economic output in U.S. states to foreign countries with comparable nominal GDPs.  Connecticut’s GDP, which ranks 23rd among the states, is comparable to the nation of Pakistan – just over $250 billion.

The U.S. map, with names of nations with comparable GDP’s, “helps put America’s GDP of nearly $18 trillion in 2014 into perspective by comparing the GDP of US states to other country’s entire national GDP,” according to the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), which developed the comparative analysis.US map

Among the highlights, as described by AEI:

  1. America’s largest state economy is California, which produced $2.31 trillion of economic output in 2014, just slightly below Brazil’s GDP in the same year of $2.35 trillion. In 2014, California as a separate country would have been the 8th largest economy in the world, ahead of Italy ($2.1 trillion) and India ($2.04 trillion) and Russia ($1.86 trillion). And California’s population is only 38.8 million compared to Brazil’s population of 200.4 million, which means California produces the same economic output as Brazil with 81% fewer people.
  2. America’s second largest state economy – Texas – produced $1.65 trillion of economic output in 2014, placing it just slightly behind the world’s 11th largest country by GDP – Canada – with $1.78 trillion of economic output.
  3. Saudi Arabia’s GDP in 2014 at $752 billion was just slightly more than the state GDP of Illinois ($746 billion).
  4. America’s third largest state – New York with a GDP in 2013 of $1.4 trillion – produced the same amount of economic output last year as Spain ($1.4 trillion), even though Spain’s population of 47.3 million people is more than twice the number of people living in New York (19.75 million).
  5. Other comparisons: Florida ($840 billion) produced about the same GDP in 2014 as the Netherlands ($866 billion), Pennsylvania ($663 billion) produces almost as much as the entire country of Switzerland ($712 billion) and Ohio ($583 billion) produces more than the entire country of Nigeria ($573 billion).

Connecticut’s GDP of $253 billion is close to that of Pakistan, which was $250 billion in 2014.  Among the other New England states, Massachusetts had a GNP of $459 billion, slightly higher than that of Iran ($404 billion), New Hampshire’s GDP of $71 billion was comparable to Syria’s nearly $72 billion, and Rhode Island’s $54 billion GDP was similar to Ethiopia’s $52 billion.GDP chart

The comparison was developed by Mark J. Perry, concurrently a scholar at American Enterprise Institute and a professor of economics and finance at the University of Michigan's Flint campus. For each US state (and the District of Columbia), he determined the country closest in economic size in 2014 (measured by nominal GDP).  For each state, there was a country “with a pretty close match,” he found.

Overall, the analysis indicated, the US produced 22.5% of world GDP in 2014, with only about 4.6% of the world’s population. Three of America’s states (California, Texas and New York) – as separate countries – would rank in the world’s top 14 largest economies. And one of those states – California – produced more than $2 trillion in economic output in 2014 – and the other two (Texas and New York) produced more than $1.6 trillion and $1.4 trillion of GDP in 2014 respectively.