South Had Most Exports by US Region in First Half of Year — Before the Hurricanes

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Exports from metropolitan areas in the South generated the most revenue of any region in the United States in the first six months of the year, according to the latest data from the Census Bureau.

Metro areas in the South accounted for about $149.6 billion in export revenue in the six-month period from January to June 2017, an increase of 8.3% from $138.1 billion in the same period a year ago.

Among the 10 selected largest areas in the South, the biggest contributor by far was the Houston–The Woodlands–Sugar Land region in Texas, which accounted for $46.7 billion. The export volume likely will be reduced in the second half of the year, as that region recovers from the devastating impact of Hurricane Harvey.

Miami–Fort Lauderdale–West Palm Beach region in Florida, which had $16.7 billion in exports in the first six months of the year, may have been affected by Hurricane Irma, which hit the Florida peninsula earlier this month.

The second-biggest region was the West, where exports rose 2.1% to $122.2 billion from $119.6 billion. Los Angeles–Long Beach–Anaheim in California generated the most exports among the 10 selected areas in this region, producing $32.4 billion in revenue, a slight increase from the same six-month period of the previous year.

Exports rose in the other two regions of the country, the East and Midwest. In the East, the New York–Newark–Jersey City region accounted $46.5 billion, more than half of the East’s total. In the Midwest, Chicago–Naperville–Elgin in Illinois ($23 billion) and Detroit–Warren–Dearborn in Michigan ($22.8 billion) had the biggest shares of the region’s exports.