Report: US Space Economy 2012 to 2021 (BEA 2023)

Source: BEA


This report summarizes new, updated, and expanded U.S. space economy statistics for 2012-2021 released on June 27, 2023. These statistics build on previous estimates that were released in January 2022 by incorporating new source data and improved methods. These space economy statistics provide estimates of the space economy’s contribution to U.S. current-dollar and chained-dollar (“real”) gross output and gross domestic product (GDP) by industry, as well as estimates of private employment and compensation. The updated and revised statistics show that, in 2021, the U.S. space economy accounted for $211.6 billion of gross output, $129.9 billion (0.6 percent) of GDP, $51.1 billion of private industry compensation, and 360,000 private industry jobs. See the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) space economy website for detailed data tables.

The U.S. space economy statistics are built using BEA’s comprehensive supply and use tables (SUTs) and National Income and Product Accounts (NIPs), which provide insight into the internal workings of the U.S. economy and detail the contribution of specific industries and products to GDP. The SUTs measure the flows of goods and services purchased by each industry, the incomes earned from production in each industry, and the distribution of sales for each product. The NIPA data present the value and composition of U.S. GDP, the types of incomes generated in its production, and its associated employment. The goal of the space economy statistics is to highlight the space-related production and spending that are already present in the SUTs and NIPAs. In practice, these statistics represent a rearrangement of existing data to isolate spending and production for the space economy. A more detailed description of the methodology and source data, including background information on BE concepts and general national accounting methods, is available in the December 2020 Survey of Current Business.

This report first presents a summary of major findings from the updated statistics, beginning with an analysis of gross output and value added by industry in recent years. A brief summary of the employment and compensation statistics is presented next, followed by a description of the revisions made to the previously published estimates for 2012-2019. The report concludes with a review of expected next steps for the space economy statistics.

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