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McKinsey: Growth and competitiveness in the United States: The role of its multinational companies

McKinsey finds that multinational corporations play a critical role in the United States economy.

McKinsey's Growth and Competitiveness in the United States report examines the economic impact of multinational companies on the U.S. economy. While multinationals account for less than 1 percent of all U.S. businesses, they generated 23 percent of the country's private sector GDP in 2007. And since 1990 they have added more than 40 percent to American labor productivity. Multinationals typically pay higher wages than other U.S. companies.

The effect of these businesses on American trade is significant. Multinationals represent approximately half of the country's exports and more than a third of imports, a favorable trade balance for the United States.

The report also surveyed 26 senior executives from some of America's biggest multinationals. Many said current U.S. policies on corporate tax, immigration limits on skilled workers, and bureaucratic obstacles discourage investment at home. Some were concerned about the country's ability to compete for future corporate investment and jobs.

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