On Tuesday, November 6, the United States held its general midterm elections for 2018. These elections included all 435 members of the House of Representatives, 34 US Senators, and 36 Governors. After a long and heated campaign season, the Republican Party and President Trump managed to expand their majority in the US Senate to more than 51 out of one hundred seats. Meanwhile, the Democratic Party managed to take back control of the US House of Representatives by securing over 218 out of the 435 seats. This means that starting in January 2019, there will be a divided government in the United States.
Democrats Take the House, Republicans Win the Senate
The United States of America is a constitutional federal republic with a total territory of 9.8 million square kilometers, which is about half the size of Russia. Located along the center third of North America, the United States has 19.924 kilometers of coastline along the north Pacific and north Atlantic oceans. Likewise, the United States shares 8.893 kilometers of border with Canada and 3.155 kilometers of border with Mexico. Currently, the United States has a total population of 327 million citizens, with an average age of 38 years. Furthermore, about 82% of the population lives in an urban setting, notably New York, Newark, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
The annual gross domestic product (GDP) of the United States is US$19.4 trillion (PPP) and the national economy has experienced positive growth in recent years. The national economy is divided into 1% agriculture, 19% manufacturing, and 80% services. Similarly, the national agriculture industry utilizes about 45% of the national territory, while another 33% is forested. In terms of natural resources, the United States has timber, coal, copper, lead, phosphates, uranium, bauxite, gold, iron, mercury, nickel, potash, silver, zinc, petroleum, and natural gas. Within manufacturing, the national industry is focused on cutting-edge technology, motor vehicles, aerospace, telecommunications, chemicals, electronics, food processing, and consumer goods. Simultaneously, the country’s agricultural industry has as main products wheat, corn, grains, fruits, vegetables, cotton, beef, pork, poultry, dairy products, and fish.
In terms of trade, the United States is the world’s second largest export economy. During 2016, the country imported US$2.12 trillion worth of goods and exported US$1.32 trillion, resulting in a trade deficit of US$791 billion. Furthermore, that same year, the country’s main export, representing 4.5% or US$ 52.2 billion of the total, were planes, helicopters, and aircraft. On the other hand, the United States’ main import, representing 8.2% or US$173 billion of all international purchases, were cars. Meanwhile, the main trading partners of the United States are China, Canada, Mexico, Japan, and the European Union.
In recent years, the average per capita protein intake of animal origin amongst the US population has been 69 grams daily. Simultaneously, land distribution in the country has evolved throughout the last half century. Back in 1961, permanent pastures and meadows in the United States covered 265 million hectares, while arable land covered 180.6 million hectares and permanent crops covered 1.9 million hectares. More recently, by 2016, permanent pastures and meadows had decreased to cover 251 million hectares, while arable land represented 152.3 million hectares and permanent crops accounted for 2.6 million hectares.
(Read more about Economic Fundamentals and Ongoing Monetary Policy)