24 May 2018


CBI's annual Sterling Assets report

The UK and the US share the largest bilateral trading system in the world.

CBI's annual Sterling Assets report

The ninth edition of CBI’s annual Sterling Assets report on the US-UK trade and investment relationship was launched this week. The research, supported Eli Lilly, highlights the growing strength of the continued special relationship between the two countries.

The report showed that the UK and the US share the largest bilateral trading system in the world, with almost $1 trillion in combined foreign direct investment. It also reported that Britain continues to be the largest foreign investor in the United States (almost $570 billion as of 2015), representing 18% of all FDI in America.

Read the full Sterling Assets report

British investment in the United States is comprehensive and well-diversified – totalling $232 billion in manufacturing, and tens of billions more in information technology and financial services. They are a core component to American research and development activities and offer on average the highest paying wages of any foreign investor.

The UK also supports over one million American jobs across every single US state. In 2014, UK business supported nearly 100,000 jobs each in Texas, New York, and California, as well as 60,000 jobs each in Pennsylvania and Illinois.

However, it is important to recognise that the UK-US economic relationship is not one-sided. American companies support over 1 million British jobs and have invested over $600 billion in the UK. Britain is the largest destination for US services in the world and fourth largest for goods behind its NAFTA partners and China. 

Despite these impressive findings, the report also highlights areas for further improvement – particularly in import harmonisation and removing technical barriers when possible.

For further information please contact John.Dickerman@cbi.org.uk