How the Economy of Your State Compares With Another Country

June 26th 2016

Taylor Bell

America's economy is by far the world's largest and is arguably also its strongest. What's surprising is how the economies of the individual states compare with those of other nations.

A new map shows just how big some of them really are. The map, by the American Enterprise Institute's Mark Perry, is featured in a Business Insider report by Elena Holodny.

It renames each state with a country that has a comparable Gross Domestic Product, or GDP: the total value of goods produced and services provided by a given economy in a year. GDP is "arguably the most important of all economic statistics as it attempts to capture the state of the economy in one number," according to the BBC.

America had a GDP of $17.4 trillion in 2014, a lot larger than that of its next-nearest rival, China ($10.4 trillion). How does your state stack up against the rest of the world?

AEI map comparing states to other countries' GDP

California has a GDP similar to that of France, but produces an equivalent amount of products and services with far fewer people, Holodny pointed out. France has about 66.5 million residents; California has just under 39 million. If California were its own country, it would have the sixth-largest economy in the world.

Montana has about the same GDP as Macau, a city-state on a peninsula on the southeast coast of China (it's administered by the People's Republic of China). In 2015 Montana had a population of just over a million, according to the Census Bureau. Macau has a population of about 600,000.

Here's a shock: Massachusetts, renowned for the quality of its education system, has an economy the same size as that of Nigeria.

How big is your state?