Utah ranks among America’s 30 biggest exporters by state behind front-runners including Texas, California, New York and Washington states. The value of Utah’s exports equals 1.1% of United States’ overall exported products for 2020.
Based on statistics from the US Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), Utah’s exported products represent 9.1% of the state’s total economic output or real Gross Domestic Product in 2020 ($195 billion in current dollars based on BEA statistics).
Given Utah’s population of 3.284 million people, its total $17.7 billion in 2020 exports translates to roughly $5,400 for every resident in the Beehive State.
Utah’s unemployment rate was 3% at February 2021, up from 2.5% one year earlier per YCharts.
Utah’s Top 10 Exports
The following export products represent the highest dollar value in Utah global shipments during 2020. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Utah.
Figures are shown at the more granular six-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level, for more precise product identification.
- Gold (unwrought): US$8.7 billion (49.3% of Utah’s total exports)
- Miscellaneous food preparations: $545 million (3.1%)
- Molybdenum ores, concentrates: $418 million (2.4%)
- Medical needles, catheters: $327 million (1.8%)
- Integrated circuits (memories): $321 million (1.8%)
- Aircraft including engines, parts: $285 million (1.6%)
- Safety airbags with inflator system: $274 million (1.5%)
- Essential oils: $224 million (1.3%)
- Solid-state semiconductor storage devices: $214 million (1.2%)
- Medical, surgical or veterinarian instruments, appliances: $211 million (1.2%)
Utah’s top 10 exports accounted for about two-thirds (65.2%) of the overall value of the state’s global shipments.
Solid-state semiconductor storage devices represent the fastest grower among the top 10 export categories, up by 791.7% from 2019 to 2020. In second place for improving export sales were molybdenum ores and concentrates thanks to a 108% gain. Utah’s shipments of medical, surgical or veterinarian instruments and appliances posted the third-fastest gain in value up by 48.6%.
Year over year, the leading decliners among Utah’s top 10 export products were aircraft including engines or other parts (down -40.7%) and integrated circuits used as memories (down -35.2%).
More Key Facts
Overall, Utah generated a $2.2 million surplus exporting and importing products during 2020. That dollar amount represents a 3.9% increase from $2.1 million for 2019.
Another way of saying surplus or deficit is positive or negative net exports. In a nutshell, the term “net exports” quantifies the amount by which foreign spending on a state’s goods or services exceeds or lags that same state’s spending on foreign goods or services.
Below are Utah’s top 10 import products highlighting the state’s highest spending on foreign-made goods in 2020.
- Gold (unwrought): $3 billion (19% of Utah’s total imports)
- Silver, unwrought: $701 million (4.5%)
- Artificial joints, parts, accessories: $563 million (3.6%)
- Modems, similar reception/transmission devices: $436 million (2.8%)
- Computer parts and accessories: $369 million (2.4%)
- Solid-state semiconductor storage devices: $286 million (1.8%)
- Safety airbags with inflator system: $264 million (1.7%)
- Semi-trailer truck tractors $258 million (1.7%)
- Integrated circuits (processors/controllers): $250 million (1.6%)
- Paper/paperboard cutting machines: $238 million (1.5%)
Utah has negative net exports notably in the international trade of large aircraft, semi-trailer truck tractors and silver. In turn, these cashflows indicate Utah’s competitive disadvantages under those product categories.
The following list shows the top 10 customers that purchased over four-fifths (84.6%) worth of the total value of products exported from Utah during 2020.
- United Kingdom: $8.9 billion (50.3% of Utah’s total exports)
- Canada: $1.5 billion (8.5%)
- Mexico: $943 million (5.3%)
- China: $739 million (4.2%)
- Japan: $664 million (3.8%)
- Taiwan: $650 million (3.7%)
- Netherlands: $517 million (2.9%)
- South Korea: $478 million (2.7%)
- Germany: $382 million (2.2%)
- Australia: $252 million (1.4%)
Utah’s top trade partners in Europe (UK, Netherlands, Germany) bought 55.4% of the overall value of exported goods from the Beehive State.
Utah Export Companies
Four Utah-based corporations rank among Fortune 1000 Companies, a list that showcases America’s largest businesses. These examples are listed below.
- Vista Outdoor (outdoor sports/recreation products)
- Zions Bancorporation (bank holding company)
- Nu Skin Enterprises (personal care items, dietary supplements)
- SkyWest Airlines (regional airliner)
Shown within brackets for each company is a summary of the products or services which each business sells, some of which are international trade-related.
Utah’s capital is Salt Lake City, a city nicknamed “The Crossroads of the West”.
See also America’s Top 20 Export States, United States Top 10 Exports and Top United States Trade Balances
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