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Behind the Data

Sustaining America’s Exceptional Economy
GDP Per Capita
You can find these graphs in “America’s Exceptional Economy,” the first video from the Examining America’s Exceptional Economy series with Ed Lazear. They measure the growth of GDP per capita for the U.K., France, Italy, Canada, Japan, and the United States over time, going back to the 1820s. While Britain had led in terms of GDP per capita, the United States surpassed them in the early 1900s and after World War II, started to pull ahead quite significantly. In 2010, America was 28% richer than Britain, 22% richer than Canada, and 65% richer than Italy.
Average Hours Worked in G7 Nations
Why is America such a desirable country for so many people? More people participate in the labor force in the United States, and they work longer hours than those in other countries.
G7 Nations' Tax Revenue
America also has had historically light taxes. The ratio of combined state, local, and federal tax to GDP in the United States is 26%, while the figure is 45% in France.