- NBR - The National Bureau of Asian Research

Trade in Services

Services represent the fastest growing sector of the global economy and account for one third of global employment and nearly 20 percent of global trade. The United States leads the world as a service exporter and U.S. prosperity is closely tied to the global economy. At the same time, a hotly contested public debate continues among policymakers, the media, and the public, over the U.S. employment impacts due to international trade and global sourcing in services. Unfortunately, the debate has been based on little concrete data about the actual number of jobs affected.

NBR publications and expert briefings have called attention to the role of services as the fastest growing sector of the global economy, and the need to address the lack of concrete data about job creation related to services trade. Recent publications include:


From more information, please contact:

Meredith Miller
Senior Vice President

The Measure of a Nation: Quantifying Innovative Strength through Improved Service Sector Metrics

The service sector makes up approximately 80% of U.S. GDP, yet there is a lack of adequate data and analytical tools to understand this rapidly changing area of the economy. Without sufficient data, how does one counter the reporter who points out specific plant closings and lay-offs allegedly due to trade with countries like China and India? The intangible nature of many types of services and shortcomings in the current statistical system makes this task much more difficult for services than it is for goods. In consultation with top experts, John M. Graham highlights the importance of this issue and provides a sophisticated roadmap for solutions.

U.S. Services Trade, Employment, and Competitiveness

This study examines the changing nature of U.S. trade, focusing on cross-border services trade and corresponding job trends and implications for U.S. global competitiveness.