Money & The Economy

U.S. Technology Exports Totaled $322 Billion in 2017, Supported 800,000+ Jobs

Exports of U.S. technology industry products and services grew by nearly $10 billion in 2017, to an estimated $322 billion, according to a new analysis released today by CompTIA, the world’s leading technology association.

The “CompTIA Tech Trade Snapshot” also reveals that tech exports directly supported an estimated 805,000 jobs in 2016, the most recent year of available data. That’s nearly 14 percent of all U.S. jobs directly supported by exports.

“Tech is one of the largest sectors for exports in the U.S. economy,” said Elizabeth Hyman, executive vice president for public advocacy at CompTIA. “Exports account for approximately $1 out of every $4generated in the U.S. tech industry. For many tech bellwethers, exports account for an even higher percentage of sales, with some companies generating more than half of their revenue overseas.”

Strong global demand for technology products and services that enable companies to modernize their operations and pursue digital business transformation initiatives are key contributing factors in the growth of U.S. tech exports, according to Tim Herbert, senior vice president for research and market intelligence at CompTIA.

“It’s also a reflection of the leadership position held by many U.S. tech companies that are on the forefront of innovation in the global marketplace,” Herbert added.

The tech sector was second only to the transportation and motor vehicles category in the dollar value and percentage of manufactured goods and products exported from the U.S. in 2017. Exports of transportation products totaled an estimated $278 billion, while tech product exports came in at an estimated $208 billion.

Tech product exports rose 3 percent in 2017, led by growth in the export of semiconductors, up $3.9 billion (+7.2 percent), and computer equipment, up $1.1 billion (+2.5 percent).

Tech product exports grew by at least 10 percent in 16 states from 2016 to 2017. These states include Illinois (+$890 million, 11.6 percent), New Jersey (+$803 million, 19 percent), New York (+$794 million, 12.6 percent), Washington (+$398 million, 10.3 percent), and New Hampshire (+$352 million, 27.4 percent). Delaware saw the highest percentage increase in tech product exports (+51.3 percent).

Exports of tech services totaled an estimated $114 billion in 2017. That volume trailed only travel services ($204 billion) and was on par with business and travel services.

Tech services exports have increased by 6.1 percent year-over-year since 2007. Between 2007 and 2016, R&D services increased by $21.6 billion (+10.2 percent annually) and IT services increased by $10 billion(+10.4 percent annually).

Eleven states experienced double-digit growth in exports of tech services. Texas led the way (+$564 million), followed by Utah (+$146 million), Kansas (+$70 million), North Dakota (+$40 million), and Alabama (+$34 million). On a percentage basis, tech export services grew fastest in North Dakota (+ 54.3 percent).

For the first time, the annual CompTIA trade report features data on jobs supported by exports in tech services in the aggregate and on the state level. Exports directly support slightly less than 10 percent of U.S. tech sector services jobs.

“The numbers show that there is room for growth in areas such as supply chain integration and delivering of services globally,” Hyman noted.

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Carl Fox

Carl Fox is the senior money and finance writer for Conservative Daily News. Follow him in the "Money & The Economy" section at CDN and see his posts on the "Junior Economists" Facebook page.

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