Our comprehensive assessment of the United States' operating environment and the outlook for its leading sectors are formed by bringing together a wealth of data on global markets that affect the United States, as well as the latest industry developments that could impact the United States' industries. This unique integrated approach has given us an impeccable track-record for predicting important shifts in the markets, ensuring you’re aware of the latest market opportunities and risks in the United States before your competitors.

Country Risk

United States Country Risk

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Core Views

  • The US economy will accelerate slightly this year, with real GDP growth increasing to 2.1% from 1.9% in 2013. Stronger contributions from personal consumption expenditure growth will be offset somewhat by slower fixed investment growth and a contraction in government spending, as well as a negative contribution from net exports.

  • The federal government's fiscal accounts will show another year of substantial improvement, due to stronger revenue collection and continued fiscal restraint due to the budget sequester. We forecast the deficit will narrow to 3.0% of GDP from 4.0% of GDP in 2013.

  • Stronger domestic oil and gas production will reduce the need for imported energy again in 2014, but this dynamic will be offset by accelerating domestic economic activity, which will boost imports. We forecast a 2.2% of GDP current account...

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United States Industry Coverage (22)

Agribusiness

United States Agribusiness

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Agribusiness Market Value
BMI Market Value By Commodity (2010-2018)

BMI View: Production growth in the grain s sector will be excellent in 2013/14 owing to record yields. However, farm incomes will be significantly lower given decreases in prices. That said , the grains sector looks relatively positive compared with livestock, where production will be flat...

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Autos

United States Autos

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While our view that the light vehicle market would return to 16mn units in 2014 and that the light truck market would outperform still very much hold true, the strength of demand has surpassed initial expectations. Incentives and discounts during the inventory-clearing summer months, coupled with affordable credit have resulted in total light vehicle sales for 8M14 of 11.185mn units, up 5.1% y-o-y. Within that total, passenger car sales were up 1.2% y-o-y and light truck sales continue to dominate with growth of 9.0% y-o-y.

Early estimates suggest that September will be another strong month and as such we have revised our forecast for the full year upward. The passenger car element remains the same, with a projection of 2.0%. However, we have revised up the light truck forecast from 5.0% to 8.0%, with the slightly lower rate than current sales taking into account the winding down of production of the Ford F-150 before the launch of its new...

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Commercial Banking

United States Commercial Banking

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Commercial Banking Sector Indicators
Date Total assets Client loans Bond portfolio Other Liabilities and capital Capital Client deposits

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Consumer Electronics

United States Consumer Electronics

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BMI   View :   The US consumer electronics market is a global leader in terms of market size and adoption of the latest technology - with high penetration rates in most device categories . Despite the maturity of the market BMI believes significant opportunities remain in emerging product categories, as well as the result of a high replacement rate in key categories such as smartphones . Growth areas include large-size HD   and UHD TV sets,...

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Defence & Security

United States Defence & Security

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As of late-August 2014 much speculation is focusing on whether the United States defence budget will be re-orientated to take account of the threat from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). ISIS is posing a major security risk to US allies in the Middle East, following its occupation of a considerable quantity of the northern regions of Iraq and Syria during the first six months of 2014. In mid-2014, the US commenced airstrikes against ISIS ground forces in northern Iraq. The airstrikes are thought to have been carried out in support of attempts by Kurdish Peshmerga guerrillas on the ground to roll back the occupation of Iraqi territory by ISIS.

The dramatic rise of ISIS, coupled with the ongoing crisis involving Russia and Ukraine and the serious security situation in Afghanistan, has bred speculation that US Congress will reverse anticipated defence spending cuts for 2015. The planned cuts are causing US defence manufacturers to...

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Food & Drink

United States Food & Drink

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The US economy will continue to strengthen in 2014, due to sustained improvement in the labour market that will fuel an acceleration in private consumption. We will continue to see positive - although slowing - fixed investment growth this year, and we believe the drag on growth from government expenditure will lessen compared to last year. However, we have revised down our 2014 growth forecast from 2.4% to 2.1% due to a particularly weak Q114. Indeed, real GDP contracted at a seasonally-adjusted, annualised rate of 2.9% in the first quarter of the year, the largest contraction during a period of economic growth in decades. That said, the downward revision is attributable to base effects from Q1 and does not suggest the start of a major slowdown. We believe many of the contributing factors have already begun to recede, suggesting a much stronger second quarter.

Headline Industry Forecasts (local currency)

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Freight Transport

United States Freight Transport

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BMI maintains its positive outlook for the US freight transport sector. Despite a fairly weak start to the year across a range of macroeconomic indicators, we maintain our forecast for US real GDP growth to accelerate to 2.8% in 2014 from 1.9% in 2013. Our view for gradual strengthening in the US economy through to the end 2014 continues to play out, driven by a tightening labour market and sustained growth in the cyclical components of the economy, notably the residential housing sector and business investment in equipment. On the back of this BMI maintains its cautiously positive outlook on the US freight sector.

A steady improvement in consumer confidence reinforces our view that private consumption will accelerate in 2014. Consumer confidence levels are at post-financial crisis highs, and the employment-to-population ratio hit 59.0% in June 2014, the highest reading since August 2009. We...

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Information Technology

United States Information Technology

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BMI View:   The outlook for   US IT spending remains strong when compared to the majority of developed markets over the medium term , as a result of stronger economic performance and a greater interest from enterprises in the latest products and solutions . Cloud computing, real-time enterprise software, security and big data are all areas of spending in which we expect to see strong growth , particularly in the latter years of our forecast . the retail...

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Infrastructure

United States Infrastructure

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BMI View:   We have upgraded our 2014 and 2015 outlook for US construction sector growth to 3.0% and 1.5% respectively , but maintain our view the recovery will trend lower as the residential construction industry normalises. The potential for any major ramp - up in infrastructure investment remains unlikely in the current political climate, but any improvement here would present upside to our five - year growth outlook.

Key Developments

  • The residential construction sector continues to expand. As expected, data has been and will continue to be mixed. However, overall the trend is for continued recovery in the sector. Housing starts, homebuilder confidence and permits are all...

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Insurance

United States Insurance

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BMI View:   The most recent results from the leading players in the life and the non-life segments of the United States' insurance sector confirm that gross written premiums have been growing at steady single-digit rates and   will continue to do so for most lines . These rates are driven forward in the coming years by economic growth, increased activity in particular sectors, firming price s and re lative absence of claims costs. Furthermore, in the life segment, significant opportunities arise from the tens of millions of households who are...

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Medical Devices

United States Medical Devices

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Espicom Industry View : The US medical market is forecast to see steady growth over the next five years, despite the impact of the newly introduced Medical Device Excise Tax and uncertainties within the healthcare system in the wake of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Imports have been growing in line with the market, which remains by far the world's largest. Exports are continuing to rise as US manufacturers seek out opportunities in emerging global markets.

Headline Industry Forecasts

  • At an estimated US$125.4bn in 2013, the US medical device market is the world's largest. Per capita expenditure, at US$392, is the second highest in the world, behind only Switzerland. The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 6.1% over the 2013-2018 period, as it settles down into a more consistent pattern after the volatile 2008-2013...

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Metals

United States Metals

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BMI View:   The US metals sector will see modest   growth over the next several years . Positive tailwinds from   accelerating economic expansion   will drive metal production and consumption. Still, total production and consumption levels will remain below pre-crisis levels through 2018.

Our expectation for accelerating real GDP growth in the coming quarters underpins our view that the metal sector will see modest growth over a multi-year period. We forecast real GDP...

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Mining

United States Mining

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BMI View:   The   US mining industry will see steady, if modest , expansion to 2018.   The bulk of mineral output and mining investment in the Americas region will occur in developing markets in Latin America. Still, the US's mining industry value will reach US D13 5 bn in 2018 as the country's stable economic and political environment, coupled with its long history of mining and its significant mineral reserves...

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Oil & Gas

United States Oil & Gas

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BMI View: Robust unconventional and offshore production is set to buoy US crude oil growth substantially . The robust production story has also fed through to the US' downstream sector. Indeed, while we do not foresee the US ending its crude oil imports in the coming years, with rising liquids production and a ban on crude exports, this will encourage greater refined product output - especially diesel and liquefied petroleum gases. W e are somewhat less sanguine on the country's gas production, at least in the short term, forecasting a more moderate growth trend. Indeed, while the severe weather in the first months of 2014 ha s seen Henry Hub prices rally, we believe the fundamental short-term nature of this move may not be sufficient...

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Petrochemicals

United States Petrochemicals

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BMI View: The US petrochemicals industry continues to expand on the back of growth in ethane availability as a result of shale gas exploitation. With exports and domestic demand growing, industrial growth is firming up and giving a positive scenario over the medium   term. However, a glut in global capacity as a result of new crackers in the US will put pressure on margins in the long   term.

According to data from the American Chemistry Council (ACC) US production of major plastic resins totalled 2.9mn tonnes during July 2014, a decrease of 1.2% y-o-y. For the January-July period, production fell 1.3% y-o-y to 20mn tonnes. Sales and captive use of major plastic resins totalled 3.1mn tonnes during July 2014, an increase of 6.5% y-o-y, while for the first seven months of the...

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Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

United States Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

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BMI View: The US pharmaceutical market presents strong commercial opportunities across the industry. Total US pharmaceutical sales reached USD347.2bn in 2013 - more than three times the size of its nearest rival Japan. The US boasts the largest individual markets across the three core sub-sectors: patented, generic and over-the-counter medicines. State-level pharmaceutical markets in the country are larger than many country-level pharmaceutical markets.  

Headline Expenditure Projections

  • Pharmaceuticals : USD347.2bn in 2013 to USD352.8bn in 2014; 1.6% growth in local currency terms. Forecast unchanged from Q314.

  • Healthcare : USD2,918bn in 2013 to USD3,112bn in 2014; +6.7% growth...

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Power

United States Power

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BMI View:   C oal's role as the pre - eminent fuel for electricity generation in the US has lessened gradually, and we anticipate that its share will dwindle further over our forecast period . Low natural gas prices will continue to drive this shift, as will a growing emphasis on renewables and more stringent EPA emissions regulations.

The dynamics governing the US power market continue to be driven by the country's shale gas boom, with low gas prices set to determine the composition of the energy mix. While gas remains cheap, the longer-term outlook for utilities that operate coal-fired and...

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Real Estate

United States Real Estate

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Stable economic growth, paired with strengthened consumer confidence, has provided a steady upturn in all three commercial real estate sectors over the course of 2014. With the economic recovery expected to gain pace in 2015, we maintain our bullish view for the country's commercial real estate market.

With a focus on the cities of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas and Philadelphia, this report covers the rental market performance in terms of rates and yields and examines how best to maximise returns in the commercial real estate market, while minimising investment risk and exploring the impact of the economy on a market that can dictate regional performance. In this respect, we generally expect the stable growth of 2014 to continue going into 2015 with moderate-to-strong growth in all sectors. Reasons for this positive outlook are solid growth indicators of the wider US economy, rising employment rates, as well as growing consumer...

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Renewables

United States Renewables

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BMI View: The prospects for renewable energy in the US have strengthened late ly , as the Obama administration shows continued c ommitment to climate change and green energy policies. Further, EPA emissions regulations governing existing US power plants have the potential to boost the US renewables market significantly. We have now upwardly revised our solar and wind forecasts over the last six months to take into account the improved market conditions for renewables in the US.

The sheer size of the US's renewables industry, in terms of installed capacity and generation, is undeniable. A high level of investment, encouraged by government subsidies and state-level renewable energy targets, has enabled the sector to expand rapidly over the past decade, driving the country to become a global renewables...

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Shipping

United States Shipping

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BMI maintains its cautiously optimistic view on the US shipping sector. After estimated contractions in TEU throughput at both the port of Los Angeles and the Port of New York/New Jersey in 2013, we forecast a return to growth in 2014 at both facilities. Our view for gradual strengthening in the US economy through end 2014 continues to play out, driven by a tightening labour market and sustained growth in the cyclical components of the economy, notably the residential housing sector and business investment in equipment.

The US economy will accelerate slightly this year, with real GDP growth increasing to 2.1% from 1.9% in 2013. Stronger contributions from personal consumption expenditure growth will be offset somewhat by slower fixed investment growth and a contraction in government spending, as well as a negative contribution from net exports. We believe risks are weighted to the upside across the US economy. The...

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Telecommunications

United States Telecommunications

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BMI View :   The mobile market has become the focus of att ention once again after France-b ased Iliad launched a USD15 bn unsolicited offer for 57% of fourth-ran ked T-Mobile US . The offer pre-empted an equally audacious offer reportedly prepared by Softbank -backed Sprint . Although T-Mobile rejected Iliad's offer, it was made clear that a superior financial offer would be considered. The fate of T-Mobile US seems likely to be sealed by the end of 2014. We believe Iliad...

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Tourism

United States Tourism

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BMI View : Our US tourism report examines the long-term potential offered by the tourism industry but highlights that weakness in European economies may put downward pressure on arrivals in the short term. In 201 5 , we forecast to urist arrivals to reach 62.5 mn, re presenting ye ar-on-year (y-o-y) growth of 4.2 %. Growth is forecast to remain around this rate throughout the rest of the forecast period to 2018. 

The travel and...

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