Throughout the world, different economies exist, which consists of multiple facets. When talking about the Americas economy, the focus remains on North America, South America, Central America, and the Caribbean, which is outlined in more detail below.
North America entails the northern continent of the Americas to include countries such as the United States, Canada, Haiti, and Mexico. In addition, North America is bordered by the North Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, the North Pacific Ocean to the west, and the Caribbean Sea to the southeast. North America is so vast that some 530 million people live over a land mass of 9.5 million square miles. Because of this, the continent is rated as the third largest on the planet.
Thanks to modern day advancements, most countries within North America are quite sophisticated although Mexico continues to develop in areas such as manufacturing, power, and transportation. Currently, per capital GDP is $46,900 and for GDP-PPP, 2008 was at $14.61 trillion, 2009 at $14.25 trillion, and 2010 at $14.62 trillion. Experts believe 2011 will show a growth of approximately 2.3%. For the GDP, the latest numbers for 2011 show services as number one with 76,9%, followed by industry at 21.9% and agriculture at 1.2%. Then for unemployment, 2009 was at 9.3%, 2010 slightly higher at 9.7%, and projections by year-end 2011 to be down somewhat at 9.6%.
Find up-to-date information on North America's economy, including statistics, industry information and forecasts on EconomyWatch.
South America is in recovery mode after being hit relatively hard by the 2008-2009 world financial crises although compared to other regions of the world has come out with less damage. Countries of which the South America economy is ranked include Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, and Peru. Overall, the GDP dropped significantly in 2009 by 3.6% with recovery improving even more dramatically in 2010 and projections for 2011 being excellent. A primary example of this can be seen in the country of Peru, which has seen the second fastest growth over the past 19 months of 9.2% thanks to demand in private investment fuels.
For example, in looking at Real GDP specific to annual percentage change, Brazil was at 2.9 for 2009, 7.6% for 2010, and while down to 5.5% projections for 2011, it is still clear that this country within South America is on the mend. For Chile, 2009 was at 3.7%, 2010 at 5.5%, and projections for 2011 at 6.5%. Finally, Peru saw 5.1% GDP in 2009 and 8.5% in 2010. As with Brazil, numbers are expected to drop in 2011 to 6.8%, which is still a solid increase from 2009.
In summary, the economic outlook for South America is favorable, as outlined below:
Regarding unemployment rates, 2009 was listed at 8.4% with 2010 seeing a small drop to 8.2%. Because the overall economy looks optimistic, it is anticipated that 2011 will end with even lower rates of unemployment.
Find up-to-date information on South America's economy, including statistics, industry information and forecasts on EconomyWatch.
While some countries within Central America have seen some economic stability such as Panama, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua being more developed, other less developed countries face ongoing economic challenges. Other countries within Central America that make up the economic structure include El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Honduras, and Panama. Of these countries, Panama has the highest GDP per capita at $3,080 although the Costa Rica economy remains solid and in fact, is growing.
Some of the numbers pertaining to GDP for Central America include the following:
Studies show what over the next decade, 4% of Central America’s GDP will go into infrastructure although the greatest challenge remains too many resources being spent in small, unproductive companies.
The final economy we wanted to discuss is the Caribbean. The positive economic aspect is that for 2011, the GDP is expected to see a 3.1% increase. In 2010, the GDP saw just a 2.1% growth and while it is expected that outside financing will be somewhat of a challenge to secure, again the 2011 GDP is expected to rise. The country will need to increase exports but also save energy as a means of increasing overall productivity. One area being focused on is the reduction of foreign debt, as well as growth in both investment and construction sectors.