World's Top Economies Include Companies and Cities

Of the largest 100 world economies, 42 are cities, or more specifically, metropolitan areas. Of those cities, 12 are located in the United States and eight in China. One-third of the top cities are national political capitals as well as economic powerhouses, and more than half the 42 cities are located along or in close proximity to a seacoast.

The data were included in a new report from the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and is based on gross domestic product (GDP) or revenue data for 2014. The report includes the top country economies ranked by GDP and the top companies ranked by 2014 revenues.

Of the 50 largest economies, only one is a company — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) — while 13 are cities and 37 are countries. National economies grab the top 13 positions in the rankings before the top city, Tokyo, sneaks in at number 14.

Only seven companies made the list of the top 100 economies, and five of those were oil companies, including two state-controlled Chinese companies: Sinopec, or officially China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. (NYSE: SNP), and PetroChina Co. Ltd. (NYSE: PTR).

The four largest country economies and their 2014 GDP totals are:

  • China: $17.19 trillion
  • United States: $16.49 trillion
  • India: $6.98 trillion
  • Japan: $4.52 trillion

The four largest cities and their GDP totals are:

  • Tokyo: $1.54 trillion
  • New York City: $1.33 trillion
  • Los Angeles: $818 billion
  • Seoul-Incheon: $804 billion

The four largest companies ranked by 2014 revenues are:

  • Wal-Mart: $453 billion
  • Royal Dutch Shell PLC (NYSE: RDS-A): $429 billion
  • Sinopec: $423 billion
  • Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM): $375 billion

Excepting Wal-Mart, the only non-oil company to make the list was Germany’s embattled Volkswagen Group ($249 billion) at number 100.

Other U.S. cities on the list: Chicago ($535 billion); Houston ($459 billion); Washington, D.C., ($420 billion); Dallas ($392 billion); Boston ($342 million); Philadelphia ($329 billion); San Francisco ($315 billion); Atlanta ($280 billion); Seattle ($254 billion); and Miami ($250 billion).

The complete list and other information are available at the Chicago Council’s website.