Visualizing The U.S. States Most Vulnerable To A Trade War

Last year, nearly $4 trillion of U.S. economic productivity was the result of international trade.

However, as Visual Capitalist's Jeff Desjardins notes, with talk of a trade war heating up once again (Russia and China), , there is a real possibility that the global trade landscape could shift dramatically over the coming months and years.

Any such shifts wouldn’t likely impact the country in a uniform and evenly distributed fashion – instead, any impending trade war would pose the largest direct risk to states that are dependent on buying and selling goods on international markets.


Today’s visualization comes to us from, and it shows every U.S. state and district organized by GDP size, as well as percentage of GDP resulting from international trade.

Courtesy of: Visual Capitalist

Here are the 10 states most reliant on international trade:

On a percentage basis, Michigan tops the list with 38.9% of the state’s GDP reliant on international trade.


On the flipside, here are the states or districts with less to lose in the event of a trade war.

Washington, D.C. tops the list, with only 1.5% of its regional GDP tied to trade.

This makes sense since The District’s economy is mostly linked to the government, service, and tourism sectors. Nearby Virginia also has surprisingly little international trade, at just 8.9% of its economy.

Want to see more on international trade? See the numbers behind the world’s closest trade relationship in this infographic.


Automatic Choke Fri, 04/13/2018 - 22:32 Permalink

quite a bit more complicated that this.

i'm in nevada.   we actually get the double-ding.....starving the asians will reduce their gambling here, and that is now a very big factor.    probably not counted in the graph, since it isn't really an export, just a way of siphoning the sucker dollars back from their big winners.



Automatic Choke Drater Sat, 04/14/2018 - 00:33 Permalink

of course, and that gets a huge amount of asian business.

LV, however, still gets a LOT of high roller asians.  they fly here and want the full a whole floor of top class hotel, private gambling rooms, etc etc.   they like to play baccarat, which is silly, as it is statistically equivalent to flipping coins (no real parameters to play hunches or expertise with)....apparently the ambience of a James Bond movie -- baccarat, elegant women, private gambling rooms with tuxedo clad dealers, etc -- makes them feel like they have decent sized peckers.

i'm not in the gaming industry, but the statistics they talk about in the local papers make this out to be a critically large portion of the economy these days.   

myself, i don't gamble, except in the stock market.   when i fly in and out of LV airport, i always stop and thank the tourists playing the slot machines for paying my taxes.   it sorta leaves them with a puzzled and confused look before they go back to the spinning wheels.....


In reply to by Drater

Endgame Napoleon cheka Sat, 04/14/2018 - 08:25 Permalink

Most of the citizens in the “high-export” states on that list, like Kentucky with its $18,093 per-capita income, do not get much out of global trade except 1) a loss in jobs offshored / outsourced to Asia or filled with welfare-aided illegal aliens, 2) a loss in the feasibility of having a small shop while competing with big-box stores that sell a high volume of foreign-made goods and 3) a loss in feasibility of having a small farm, etc. 

Another thing that is lost due to the offshoring / outsourcing of jobs to foreign nations—and due to the mass hiring of welfare-boosted illegal aliens who can accept rock-bottom pay due to having sex, producing US-born kids and staying under the income limits for welfare—is the loss to the Social Security trust fund, into which citizens sink either 7.65 or 15.3% of every dime they ever earn. 

Here is a solution: Tax companies that offshore / outsource jobs to China, Mexico, etc. at 15.3% per foreign worker. Except in agriculture and professions that are incredibly dangerous, tax employers when they employ a robot instead of a human.

Stop the hollowing out of American jobs and national fiscal solvency.

Tax Wall Street 15.3% for its equity bots. Tax a factory or a roofing company, full of illegal aliens, 15.3% apiece in lump sum for every month that every illegal alien worked there until caught. Make the companies pay back welfare money given to poorly paid illegal aliens for having sex and reproducing, just like government makes single dads pay back welfare money given to the mothers of their children.  

Industries that employ a large percentage of legal immigrants, bypassing American citizens because people from certain foreign minority groups are said to be more skilled, do pay SS tax, unlike companies that set up production in racially non-diverse countries, like Asian nations.

But when companies import a bunch of guest workers to the USA, it increases the cost of schooling and medical care, especially since most of the foreign workers get pregnant the minute they get here. Tax companies extra to pay for the extra medical expense and the extra educational expense of the immigrant workers in the minority groups that they prefer to hire, rather than raising property taxes or other taxes on displaced citizens.


In reply to by cheka

snblitz Endgame Napoleon Sat, 04/14/2018 - 13:24 Permalink

In order to keep jobs from fleeing America, disadvantages of taxes and regulation must be offset.

Now I would much prefer lower taxes and less regulation, but as a country if we impose taxes and regulations on our citizens and we want to keep jobs here in the US we **must** impose those same taxes and regulations on our trade partners.

Besides, if those taxes and regulations are good for "our" citizens, are they not "good" for their citizens?

Trade is not really about fair.

In voluntary exchange without interference from third parties, you are free to create **any** terms you wish for your trade.  The requirements that you create around your half of the trade are not fair or unfair, they are simply what you want to conduct the trade.

In reply to by Endgame Napoleon

LightBeamCowboy Adolph.H. Sat, 04/14/2018 - 11:15 Permalink

It's almost impossible to present honest graphs. These assume that a "trade war" will be a new phenomenon, not one that has been systemic and ongoing against the US for decades. What about the states that have been harmed by the trade war against the US? For example Wisconsin, with Germany's and Japan's extremely high tariffs on Harley Davidson motorcycles? What is the US tariff on BMW  and Japanese motorcycles?

In reply to by Adolph.H.

snblitz LightBeamCowboy Sat, 04/14/2018 - 13:30 Permalink

There are winners and losers when trade policy changes.  It really depends on if you are taking a micro or macro view of the economy and the time frame.

For example, soy bean farmers are likely to be hurt by a chinese soy bean tariff.

But the next year they will plant wheat, or corn instead.

From a macro point of view it really is a question of buy local.

If US consumers bought exclusively domestically ever single full time worker would get a $6400 raise.

$800 billion / 125 million US workers = $6400.




In reply to by LightBeamCowboy

Automatic Choke Pernicious Gol… Sat, 04/14/2018 - 00:29 Permalink

Hi PerniGol -    Serious question?

I dunno, I'm not a normal Nevada type.    My wife and I moved here a bit less than a decade ago because we were sick and tired of the east coast, and we are outdoors types / avid hikers.  We had been stuck back east 25 years (both scientists) due to difficulty of two jobs.  I went independent and we only had to look for one, and my wife got a good professor position at UNLV.  I run a consulting business (physics, electronics, controls) with NO clients in Nevada (most old contacts in MA).  We have nothing to do with the gambling or mining industries, which comprise much of the economy here.

The demographics are disappointing -- due to the demand for car-parks, pole-dancers, and (lately) construction workers, the fraction of the population with college education is on par with Pig's Knuckle Alabama.  Out in the suburbs, though, the folks are nice and the living fine.  Pretty much what you would find anywhere.

Culturally, Las Vegas seems to be a suburb of LA, which kinda sucks.  The hiking, however, is superb.  This is mecca.   Mountains, deserts, canyons...more astounding backcountry than you can shake your pecker at.  Any time of year, I can be in superb backcountry in a half hour and hike my balls off for an afternoon, still be home for dinner.  Zion, Grand Canyon, Death Valley all within a few hours drive.  Backside of the sierra within 4-5.  You just can't beat it.

You have old fashioned values?   Skip Nevada, move to Utah.  We're probably going to do that as soon as my wife retires from the University.....already house hunting.   So retirement?   No, or perhaps just for a few years while you cash out your IRAs and 401k accounts (no state taxes) to post-tax status.

I hope this helps.

In reply to by Pernicious Gol…

August Pernicious Gol… Sat, 04/14/2018 - 00:30 Permalink

At least you'll be able to see the zombies coming.  More seriously:

1) If you haven't already done so, you need to spend a good chunk of time there.

2) Reno used to be a pretty nice place - 30 or 40 years back, but now it's urban California.

3) A lot depends on what you like/need, and what you expect to happen with the US economy.

4) There are still a few pleasant out-of-the-way spots, but the only place I'm considering myself is near the Arizona line, southeast of Vegas.

Good... er, luck.

In reply to by Pernicious Gol…

Yen Cross Fri, 04/13/2018 - 22:40 Permalink

    Why is the voice of sanity so mis represented?

   The only way to keep a currency alive, is to split it!

  Fractional reserve lending.

  Not un-like Stock certificates?

Koba the Dread Fri, 04/13/2018 - 23:08 Permalink

I see that the District of Columbia has the lowest percentage of foreign trade as a portion of GDP, 1.5%. I assume that the 98.5% is domestic trade with the District of Columbia exporting bullshit to all the various states.

It's a bit hard to imagine that bombings, missile attacks and war, DC's major international trade items are only 1.5% of it's total trade.

BetterRalph Sat, 04/14/2018 - 01:01 Permalink

If good Californians survive, we really are getting sick of the smack you talk about our state. You don't want your friend to be your enemy so cut it the hell out already, lock the commies up in California and we are good neighbors again.

But as you can see with both your eyes the FBI, DOJ, CIA are corruption central station.  They allow commie rat-lines. The local mayor gives criminals a tip. I'd argue if they started in your state I would NOT talk smack about it, I'd help you resolve it. Even if I could do something, what corrupt agency is gonna support me? I can't even get a local rep to respond to me in California about the homeless problem.

You want me to go to jail for the rest of my life without your support? 

I ask the military remove this burdon.  It's staight broken oaths.  Baccerra, and others. I'd have em in a 2' * 2' box with red eyes.

Mr_Potatohead BetterRalph Sat, 04/14/2018 - 07:05 Permalink

Good Californians?  I lived there for 17 years - before things really went downhill.  There can't be many left by now.  At this point, the state is so screwed up that nothing can save it except a huge reset.  With its population density, natural barriers to keep people in, complete dependence on a just-in-time supply chain, and over-confidence about its importance or ability to survive in an emergency, the state is "Venezuela-waiting-to-happen".  And it just might happen sooner than most people think based on recent events in the world.

In reply to by BetterRalph

divingengineer Mr_Potatohead Sat, 04/14/2018 - 12:02 Permalink

Outside of LA, SF and Sac people are normal. Go to Ft Bragg, Murphys, Tehachapi or Weaverville and meet normal hardworking people. You will probably find that 95% of all decent paying jobs are in LA, SF, Sac, so you may have a point, but I still assert there are still, mostly good people here they are just spread around.

The shitbags are concentrated and have strong political representation. The good folks get jack-shit, they get to pay for the whole fuckshow.

In reply to by Mr_Potatohead

snblitz Mr_Potatohead Sat, 04/14/2018 - 13:58 Permalink

I have lived in California 40+ years.  Silicon Valley and the SF bay area have become horrible places. I live about 10 miles outside the suburbs of Silicon Valley and my relations all live in the valley itself.

The people of the valley have been spreading out into the suburbs and a little into the country side.

It is sadly funny, the people who live in the valley do not know how horrible it is.  Or maybe they do as so many are moving away.

If you make a mistake driving, say getting too close to a bicycle, the bicyclist will kick in the side of your vehicle and pedal off.  This has happened to me.  I have a dash cam and was able to review my interaction with the bicyclist.  I could find nothing amiss, though I do drive a generate white truck and perhaps the bicyclist was angry at another white truck they mistook for mine.  But this is life in the bay area.  I try to stay away from it myself.

I was also assaulted walking amongst a group of people who were trying to decide on which restaurant there were going to go to.  They apparently felt that I and my party should wait outside while they decided which restaurant they want to eat at.

These are not isolated incidences.

Like SJWs they are easily triggered.  Often times you are not even aware of what triggers them.

Another big difference is that of striking up conversations with random people.

You see it most clearly in interacting with older people.  As I am older I can strike up a conversation with most any other older person or group of older people I come across out in public.  However, this is nearly impossible to do with younger people.  I would put the dividing line around 40 years of age.

In reply to by Mr_Potatohead

MoreFreedom Sat, 04/14/2018 - 09:47 Permalink

This doesn't break out imports vs. exports.  Nevertheless, what I get from the chart, is that a trade war will have a big impact on the economy as US tariffs increase prices for consumers and manufacturers who use imports as inputs to their products.  And as foreign nations raise their tariffs, exports will decline as well.  Thus workers who export some of their product will take a hit from increased costs to their products, and increased costs to their customers.  That will move jobs out of the US to where countries have lower tariffs.

Let's not forget those anti-foreigner high tariff proponents, Republicans Hoover, Smoot and Hawley.  After implementing their tariffs, US GDP fell by nearly half within 3 short years.  Democrats campaigned on removing those tariffs, and all three of these guys lost their re-election bids.  And their tariffs were immediately repealed.  And the Democrats held the presidency for the next 20 years.  This might be Trump's fate if he's not careful.