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Which is strongest economy in world?

There are a few key factors that determine the strength of an economy: GDP, GDP growth rate, GDP per capita, unemployment rate, inflation rate, exports, budget deficit/surplus, and national debt. Based on an analysis of these metrics for major economies around the world, the United States and China stand out as having the strongest economies overall. However, other economies like Japan, Germany, and India also showcase strengths in certain areas.


Gross domestic product (GDP) measures the total value of goods and services produced within a country. It is one of the primary indicators used to gauge the size and health of a country’s economy. The top 5 countries by GDP in 2022 are:

Country GDP (Billion USD)
United States 25,364
China 19,804
Japan 5,404
Germany 4,757
United Kingdom 3,571

The United States has the largest GDP in the world at over $25 trillion. China places second with a GDP of nearly $20 trillion. While China’s total GDP remains below that of the US, it has been growing at a much faster rate over the past few decades. Japan, Germany, and the UK round out the top 5 largest economies by GDP.

GDP Growth Rate

While GDP provides a snapshot of an economy’s size, the GDP growth rate provides insights into the economy’s trajectory and dynamism. A higher GDP growth rate indicates faster economic expansion. The top 5 countries by GDP growth rate in 2022 are:

Country GDP Growth Rate (%)
India 6.8%
Saudi Arabia 5.1%
Indonesia 5.0%
Turkey 3.5%
United States 2.0%

India has the fastest growing economy with an estimated GDP growth rate of 6.8% in 2022. Saudi Arabia and Indonesia follow close behind with growth rates above 5%. The US ranks 5th with a GDP growth rate of 2.0% – modest compared to emerging economies but still respectable for a developed country with an already large GDP. China’s growth has slowed in recent years to around 3-4%.

GDP Per Capita

While GDP measures the overall size of an economy, GDP per capita adjusts for population and provides a sense of the average economic output per person. It is a rough measure of a country’s standard of living. The top 5 countries by GDP per capita in 2022 are:

Country GDP Per Capita (USD)
Luxembourg 128,100
Switzerland 95,600
Norway 86,400
United States 76,300
Ireland 99,400

Tiny Luxembourg tops the list with a GDP per capita of over $128,000 thanks to its robust financial services industry. Switzerland and Norway swap places with the US and Ireland in the top 5 compared to total GDP rankings. Among major economies, the US ranks 4th, Germany ranks 18th, China ranks 80th, and India ranks 147th in GDP per capita.

Unemployment Rate

The unemployment rate measures the share of the labor force that is jobless but actively seeking employment. A lower unemployment rate signifies a healthier economy with more job creation. The top 5 countries by lowest unemployment rate in 2022 are:

Country Unemployment Rate (%)
Qatar 0.1%
Cambodia 0.2%
Singapore 2.1%
Vietnam 2.2%
Thailand 2.2%

Many Asian economies like Qatar, Cambodia, Singapore, Vietnam and Thailand boast extremely low unemployment rates below 2.5%. Among major economies, Germany has an unemployment rate of 3.3%, the US 3.7%, UK 4.1%, Japan 2.7%, and China 5.5%. Most economists consider an unemployment rate under 5% to signify a strong economy.

Inflation Rate

The inflation rate measures the rate of increase in the overall price level of goods and services in an economy. Runaway inflation erodes purchasing power and disrupts consumer spending, investing, and economic stability. The top 5 countries with the lowest inflation rates in 2022 are:

Country Inflation Rate (%)
Japan -0.2%
Switzerland 3.0%
China 3.4%
United States 8.2%
India 6.8%

Japan experienced deflation with a slightly negative inflation rate in 2022. Switzerland and China kept inflation below 4%. Among major economies with higher inflation is the US at 8.2% and UK at 10.1%. Most economists recommend an inflation rate between 2-3% as optimal for economic growth.


A country’s exports measure the value of its domestically produced goods and services sold to foreign buyers. More exports boost economic growth and job creation. The top 5 exporters in the world ranked by total value of exports in 2022 are:

Country Exports (Billion USD)
China 3,950
United States 2,100
Germany 2,015
Netherlands 1,130
Japan 1,055

China is the world’s largest exporter by far with nearly $4 trillion in exports in 2022. The US, Germany, Netherlands and Japan make up the remaining top 5 exporting countries. Among the major economies, South Korea ranks 6th, the UK 10th, and India 19th in total exports.

Budget Deficit/Surplus

A budget deficit occurs when a government spends more than it earns in revenues in a given fiscal year. Persistent large deficits can be a sign of fiscal irresponsibility and lead to growing national debt burdens. The top 5 countries with the largest budget surpluses in 2022 as a % of GDP are:

Country Budget Surplus (% of GDP)
Singapore 5.0%
Saudi Arabia 4.4%
Hong Kong 3.9%
Taiwan 3.1%
Switzerland 2.5%

Singapore, Saudi Arabia and Hong Kong ran sizable budget surpluses above 3% of GDP in 2022. Among major economies, Germany had a surplus of 0.3% of GDP while the UK had a deficit of 4.3%, the US 5.5%, and India 6.5% of GDP in 2022. Persistent large deficits could pose risks for long-term fiscal stability.

National Debt

In addition to budget deficits/surpluses, the national debt as a percentage of GDP also provides insights into a country’s fiscal health. Higher debt levels pose risks but moderate debt levels around 60% of GDP are considered sustainable. The top 5 countries with the lowest debt as a % of GDP are:

Country Debt (% of GDP)
Estonia 18.2%
Bulgaria 23.1%
Luxembourg 24.6%
Latvia 42.2%
Denmark 42.2%

Estonia, Bulgaria and Luxembourg have exceptionally low debt levels below 25% of GDP. Among major economies, China’s debt is around 66% of GDP. The US debt is a much higher 123% of GDP. Japan has the highest debt levels among developed economies at 266% of GDP.


In summary, while there is no single definitive measure, the United States and China appear to have the strongest overall economies based on a combination of metrics like GDP size, GDP growth, low unemployment, stable inflation, exports strength and fiscal discipline.

The US leads among developed economies with its large $25 trillion GDP, high per capita income, strong exports and moderate inflation. Its high national debt and growing budget deficits are concerns for long-term fiscal sustainability.

Meanwhile, China is the world’s manufacturing powerhouse with a huge economy that has averaged 6-8% GDP growth for decades. However, its per capita income, exports mix and debt levels still lag developed nations.

Other economies like Germany, Japan, and India exhibit strengths in certain areas – Germany’s high exports and budget discipline, Japan’s low inflation and unemployment, and India’s robust GDP growth. But they trail the overall economic might of the US and China.