U.S. Trade Optimism at All-Time High; U.S. Dominance in Technology Exports
to Remain Strong: HSBC Report
** Wholesalers/retailers, manufacturers most optimistic**
**U.S. to remain global leader in technology exports for next two decades**
NEW YORK -- March 17, 2014
Trade optimism among U.S. business leaders is at an all-time high and the U.S.
is positioned to retain its dominance as a global technology export leader,
including in industrial machinery, for the next twenty years, according to
research by HSBC.
However, to maintain its supremacy, the U.S. will need to increase research
and innovation investment, according to data from the latest HSBC Global
Connections Trade Report, which includes the short-term trade trends from the
HSBC Trade Confidence Index and mid- and long-term trade outlook from the HSBC
U.S. wholesalers/manufacturers most optimistic about stronger trade flows
The U.S. HSBC Trade Confidence Index rose to 115 from 114 six months earlier,
the highest level since its inception, and higher than the global average of
113, driven by stronger global demand and increased private sector confidence.
The index is an international survey of small and middle market businesses
engaged in cross-border trade including around 250 in the U.S. Unexpectedly
strong recovery in leading industrialized nations, including the U.S., has
boosted global trade confidence, according to the report.
U.S. wholesalers, retailers and manufacturers were the most optimistic about
the six month trade outlook with more than 70 percent of these sector leaders
expecting stronger trade flows. Other key findings include:
*Two thirds of U.S. respondents expect trade volumes to rise in the next
*50 percent cited increased global demand and improved economic conditions
in key industries, including manufacturing, as key drivers of the
*Most U.S. business leaders still see Asia as the most promising export
region (33 percent), followed by Latin America (28 percent).
*Within Asia, Vietnam and Korea are the fastest growing destinations for
U.S. exports in the near term; China is expected to be the market with the
greatest upside potential over the longer term.
*Canada, Mexico and China are expected to continue to rank as the top
destinations for U.S. exports for the next two decades, with Korea and
Brazil rounding out the top five.
“The U.S. has a highly educated workforce, advanced technology and high R&D
investment rates,” said Steve Bottomley, HSBC Group General Manager, Senior
Executive Vice President and Head of Commercial Banking for HSBC in North
America. “And with high demand growth in emerging markets longer term, U.S.
businesses and exporters should greatly benefit.”
U.S. to remain global leader in technology exports over the next 20 years
In fact, U.S. technology-intensive exports will grow faster than total U.S.
trade over the midterm, and the U.S. is expected to retain its position as a
top technology goods exporter for the next two decades, third highest among 25
countries included in the forecast. However, emerging markets are rapidly
increasing R&D investment to capture more of the value of their merchandise
exports, and the U.S. still has room to improve its R&D spending, which
currently ranks below Japan and Korea, according to the report.
“As an owner of the intellectual property of high value goods, the U.S. and
other developed economies currently dominate the global technology export
market, but under-investment in R&D over the long term can pose a competitive
threat,” said Prabhat Vira, Regional Head of Global Trade and Receivables
Finance in North America for HSBC. “The world economy is becoming more
knowledge-intensive and for the U.S. to retain its lead, it’s crucial that
businesses continue to invest in research and innovation.”
Technology goods are products such as office and automatic data-processing
machines, telecommunications equipment, electrical machinery and appliances,
and photographic apparatus and optical goods. Technology is essential for
maintaining and enhancing standards of living, promoting business investment
and supporting economic development.
Other trade findings from the report include:
*Technology-intensive goods are expected to account for 17 percent of the
total growth in U.S. export goods for the remainder of the decade.
*Globally, trade in high-tech goods will outpace growth in total
merchandise exports, increasing its share of total goods traded from 22
percent in 2013 to over 25 percent by 2030.
*HSBC forecasts U.S. trade growth of six percent annually from 2014 to
*HSBC forecasts global trade growth of eight percent annually to 2030.
*U.S. exports will be driven primarily by industrial machinery, followed by
transport equipment and scientific apparatus.
*On the import front, industrial machinery, transport and information,
communications and technology equipment are expected to top U.S. imports
for the foreseeable future.
For a copy of the Global Connections Trade Forecast report and for further
information, log onto http://www.globalconnections.hsbc.com/. An infographic
which portrays key findings from the latest trade forecast is also available
Notes to editors:
For updates from the HSBC Press Office, follow us on Twitter:
HSBC’s Trade Forecast encompasses trade data for 25 countries and territories
key to world trade.
About the HSBC Trade Forecast - Modelled by Oxford Economics
Oxford Economics has tailored a unique service for HSBC which forecasts
bilateral trade for total exports/imports of goods, based on HSBC’s own
analysis and forecasts of the world economy to generate a full bilateral set
of trade flows for total imports and exports of goods, and balances between
180 pairs of countries.
Oxford Economics employs a global modelling framework that ensures full
consistency between all economies, in part driven by trade linkages. The
forecasts take into account factors such as the rate of demand growth in the
destination market and the exporter's competitiveness. Exports, imports and
trade balances are identified, with both historical estimates and forecasts
for the periods 2014-16, 2017-20 and 2021-30. Sectors are classified according
to the UN’s Standard International Trade Classifications according to the UN’s
Standard International Trade Classifications (SITC) and grouped into 30 sector
headings. More information about the sector modeling can be found on
HSBC Trade Confidence Index
The HSBC Trade Confidence Index is conducted by TNS on behalf of HSBC in a
total of 23 markets, and is the largest trade confidence survey globally. The
current survey comprises six-month views of 5,800 exporters, importers and
traders from small and mid-market enterprises on: trade volumes, risk to
suppliers, need and access to trade finance, impact of exchange rates and
regulation. The fieldwork for the current survey was conducted between
November – December 2013 and gauges sentiment and expectations on trade
activity and business growth in the next six months.
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faster-growing markets around the world. Whether it is working capital, trade
finance or payments and cash management solutions, we provide the tools and
expertise that businesses need to thrive. With a network covering three
quarters of global commerce, we make HSBC the world’s leading international
trade and business bank. For more information see
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