The Nine Indices of Global Imperialism 2021

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26/11/2021 by socialistfight

An exchange office clerk counts U.S. dollars in Istanbul, Turkey.
An exchange office clerk counts U.S. dollars in Istanbul, Turkey. Onur Coban/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Most Foreign Exchange Reserves Are in U.S. Dollars

Share of foreign exchange reserves, first quarter of 2020: U.S. dollar 62.0% Euro 20.1% Japanese yen 5.7% British pound sterling 4.4% Chinese renminbi 2.0% Canadian dollar 1.8% Australian dollar 1.6% Other currencies 2.3%

  1. The US Dollar is by far the world’s leading reserve and trading currency for oil and almost every other commodity in the world.

 The U.S. dollar is predominantly the standard currency unit in which goods are quoted and traded, and with which payments are settled in, in the global commodity markets. As reserve currencies at the end of 2020 the Dollar accounted for 59%, the Euro for 21% and with the rest below 10%, the Renminbi at some 2%.International use of the dollar, Wikipedia,

  • New York tops the list of the world’s leading financial centres in 2021

for the nineth year with London in second-place followed by Hong Kong, Singapore, San Francisco, Shanghai, Los Angeles, Beijing, Tokyo, Paris, Chicago, and Boston.

  • According to Forbes 2000 of the world’s top 10 multinationals, the US has 5, China has 4 and Saudi Arabia one.

The 4 Chinese and 4 of the 5 US companies are in banking and financial services. Forbes reports, “The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China was No. 1 for the ninth consecutive year; No. 4 was another government banker, China Construction Bank (down from No. 2 last year). Ping An Insurance moved up a notch to No. 6 from No. 7 a year ago, and Agricultural Bank of China made the top 10 at No. 9, though its rank fell from No. 5 in 2020”. As of August 2021, this is the Forbes of companies with the highest revenues in the top 500 companies: China, 135, United States, 122, Japan, 53, France, 31, Germany, 27, United Kingdom, 22, South Korea, 15, Switzerland, 13, Canada, 12, Netherlands, 11.  

China Has the Most Foreign Exchange Reserves

Value of non-gold reserves by territory, 2019 (billions of dollars) China $3,127 Japan $1,285 Switzerland $804 Saudi Arabia $499 Taiwan $478 Russia $444 Hong Kong $441 India $432 South Korea $404 Brazil $354 Singapore $279 Thailand $217 Mexico $177 United Kingdom $158 Czech Republic $149 Israel $126 Indonesia $125 United States $118 Poland $117United Arab Emirates $107
Note: With the exception of Taiwan, totals comprise foreign exchange reserves held by monetary authorities, reserves held by the IMF, and IMF Special Drawing Rights. Sources: World Bank; Central Bank of the Republic of China (Taiwan).

1. New York Stock Exchange (NYSE. The market cap of all listed companies on NYSE is approximately $22.9 trillion as of 2021.

2. NASDAQ. More than 3000 stocks are listed on NASDAQ with an average trading value of $1.26 trillion every month. Big technology heavy-weight companies like Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Tesla, Amazon, Apple, etc. are listed on this exchange. NASDAQ listed companies contribute 9% of the total market value of the world. Its market capitalisation is $19.4 trillion (2021)

3. Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) has more than 3500 companies listed whose cumulative market capitalization is more than $5 trillion.

4. Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) has more than 1450 public limited companies listed on its platform whose combined market capitalization is around $4 trillion.

5. Euronext, is located in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Euronext has more than 1300 companies listed on its platform with a total market capitalization of more than $4.2 trillion.

6. Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE). There are 1200 total debt securities and more than 2300 companies listed on HKSE out of which around 50% of them are from mainland China. The total market capitalization of all listed HKSE stocks is more than 4 trillion.

7. London Stock Exchange (LSE). There are approximately 3000 companies listed under the London Stock Exchange with a combined market capitalization of more than 3.7 trillion dollars.

8. Shenzhen Stock Exchange Shenzhen has more than 1400 companies listed on its platform with a total market capitalization value of approximately $3.92 trillion.

9. Toronto Stock Exchange. TSE has around 2200 listed companies with a total market capitalization of $2.1 trillion.

10. BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange). BSE located at Dalal Street, Mumbai has more than 5500 listed on its platform. BSE’s total market capitalization is greater than $2 trillion.

Note the two US stock exchanges at $42.3 trillion are almost twice as big as the next eight combined at $24.92 trillion. The US, with its subordinate allies, Japan, Europe, and Canada, is absolutely dominant

  • The ranking of countries by Gross domestic Product:

  • United States (GDP: 20.49 trillion),
  • China (GDP: 13.4 trillion)
  • Japan: (GDP: 4.97 trillion)
  • Germany: (GDP: 4.00 trillion)
  • United Kingdom: (GDP: 2.83 trillion)
  • France: (GDP: 2.78 trillion)
  • India: (GDP: 2.72 trillion)
  • Italy: (GDP: 2.07 trillion)
  • Brazil: (GDP: 1.87 trillion)
  • Canada: (GDP: 1.71 trillion)

Obviously, if we take the more meaningful GDP per capita given by the IMF for 2021 we get an entirely different picture. That is headed by tax havens and petro-states, Liechtenstein, Qatar, Monaco, Luxembourg, etc. On this low-corporation-tax Ireland comes in at No. 5, the US at 15, Germany at 26, France at 35, the UK at 37, Italy at 44, Russia at 74, China at 100, South Africa at 129 and India at 155.

  • Biggest military Expenditure in 2021 and percentage of global total:

Stockholm international peace research institute (SIPRI)

In 2020 US military expenditure reached an estimated $778 billion, representing an increase of 4.4 per cent over 2019. As the world’s largest military spender, the USA accounted for 39 per cent of total military expenditure in 2020. China’s military expenditure, the second highest in the world, is estimated to have totalled $252 billion in 2020. This represents an increase of 1.9 per cent over 2019 and 76 per cent over the decade 2011–20. 12 NATO members spent 2 per cent or more of their GDP on their militaries, the Alliance’s guideline spending target, compared with 9 members in 2019. France, for example, the 8th biggest spender globally, passed the 2 per cent threshold for the first time since 2009.

This is the SIPRI list in US Billion Dollars, % of GDP and % of Global Spending:

1. United States $ Billion 778.0, 3.7% 39%, 2. China, $ Billion 252.0, 1.7%, 13%, India $ Billion 72.9, 2.9% 3.7%, Russia, $ Billion 61.7, 4.3%, 3.1%, United Kingdom, $ Billion 59.2, 2.2%, 3.0%,  Saudi Arabia,  $ Billion 57.5 8.4%, 2.9%,  Germany, $ Billion 52.8, 1.4%, 2.7%, France, $ Billion 52.7, 2.1%,  2.7%, Japan, $ Billion 49.1, 1.0%, 2.5%, South Korea, $ Billion 45.7 2.8%, 2.3%

In April 2021 the Diplomat’s Benjamin Mainardi, exposed the propaganda of the US Department of Defense that China’s navy had surpassed the US. We have extracted the essence from that article:

The USS Theodore Roosevelt carrier strike group transits in formation while deployed in the Indo-Pacific region in January 2020. Although China has more ships they cannot compare in any way with the power and sophistication of the US Navy. Suggestions that they do are false propaganda.

 Yes, China Has the World’s Largest Navy. That Matters Less Than You Might Think. China’s fleet relies disproportionately on smaller classes of ships – and U.S. capabilities are bolstered by its allies’ navies.

In order of descending size, the PLAN’s surface force is comprised of two aircraft carriers, one cruiser, 32 destroyers, 49 frigates, 37 corvettes, and 86 missile-armed coastal patrol ships. In addition, China’s submarine fleet includes 46 diesel-powered attack submarines, six nuclear-powered attack submarines, and four ballistic missile submarines. This is further supplemented by the China Coast Guard, which fields roughly 255 coastal patrol ships. In sum, China has a surface warship fleet of 121 vessels, a submarine fleet of 56 platforms, and another 341 coastal patrol ships.

For its part the United States Navy boasts a surface fleet of 11 aircraft carriers, 92 cruisers and destroyers, and 59 small surface combatants and combat logistics ships. Its submarine fleet is comprised of 50 attack submarines, 14 ballistic missile submarines, and four cruise missile submarines. As such, the United States maintains a surface fleet of about 162 vessels, depending on the inclusion of its small combatants and combat logistics ships, and a submarine fleet of 68 platforms.

Here we clearly see that talk of China’s massive navy is rather out of proportion. It should be noted that China’s fleet relies disproportionately on smaller classes of ships, like the frigate and corvette, which are widely considered not to be major surface combatants. Even still, the bulk of its numbers advantage comes from its coastal patrol ships which, while not insignificant, have limited capacity to project power beyond China’s near seas. Further, the United States maintains a massive carrier advantage. Wherever one falls on the debate over the continued viability of aircraft carriers, the fact remains that both states are interested in producing them.

The Diplomat Benjamin Mainardi, April 07, 2021,

And this from United Service Organizations:

1. How Many Fleets Does the U.S. Navy Have?

The U.S. Navy has seven active, numbered fleets in its arsenal. 2nd Fleet, 3rd Fleet, 4th Fleet, 5th Fleet, 6th Fleet, 7th Fleet, and 10th Fleet. Certain numbered fleets, which were originally established during World War II, have since been deactivated or merged with other fleets, which is why today’s seven active fleets are not numbered in numerical order.

2. Is the U.S. Navy the Largest Navy in the World?

Technically, the U.S. Navy is the world’s second-largest navy – as of a 2021 Department of Defense report, China holds the title of the largest on the globe. However, most of China’s navy force is made up of small, coastal patrol ships and frigates, so although their numbers are slightly greater, the U.S. Navy’s fleets far outstrip theirs in power.

3. The U.S. Navy is a Force to Be Reckoned With

The U.S. Navy has bigger and more heavily armed vessels than any other navy in the world. It boasts 11 aircraft carriers, 92 cruisers and destroyers and 59 small surface combatants and combat logistics ships. Its submarine fleet is made up of 50 attack submarines, 14 ballistic missile submarines and four cruise missile submarines. The U.S. Navy is also bolstered by the navies of American allies, who work in close collaboration with the United States.

How Many Navy Fleets Does the U.S. Have? And Other Facts About One of the World’s Biggest Navies, By Danielle DeSimone, Friday, Oct 8, 2021,

And this from Wikipedia:

As of November 2021, there are 45 active aircraft carriers in the world operated by fourteen navies. The United States Navy has 11 large nuclear-powered fleet carriers—carrying around 80 fighters each—the largest carriers in the world; the total combined deck space is over twice that of all other nations combined. Two nations currently operate Catapult-assisted take-off barrier-arrested recovery (CATOBAR) carriers which generally carry the largest, heaviest, and most heavily armed aircraft, carriers of this type: ten Nimitz and one Gerald R. Ford-class fleet carriers with another nine of the latter planned by the United States, and one medium-sized carrier by France, for a world total of twelve in service. In nuclear-powered carriers two reactors drive two turbine generators and then three electric motors powering the propellers, producing 60 MW propulsive power. Refuelling cycle quoted at 6-7 years, or at 65% capacity factor refuelling is every 7-10 years, overhaul at 20 years, over a 60-year operating lifetime.

Wikipedia, Aircraft carrier,

Jacobin, 27-8-2019, As of 2015, the United States controlled approximately 800 bases outside the fifty US states and Washington, DC. The sheer number of bases as well as the secrecy and lack of transparency of the overseas base network make any graphic depiction challenging. This map reflects the bases’ relative number and positioning given the best available information. Key sources: Department of Defense, “Base Structure Report Fiscal Year 2014 Baseline”; Robert E. Harkavy, Strategic Basing and the Great Powers, 1200–2000, ; Michael J. Lostumbo et al., “Overseas Basing of US Military Forces”; Chalmers Johnson, The Sorrows of Empire, ; Nick Turse,; Craig Whitlock, Washington Post, ;; news reports.
  • Despite recently closing hundreds of bases in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States still maintains nearly 750 military bases in more than 80 countries and territories abroad

This from the overseas base realignment and closure coalition:

US military bases overseas the facts

750 military base sites estimated in around 80+ foreign countries and colonies/territories.

75-85% of the world’s foreign military bases; UK=145; Russia = 12-36; China = 8 (plus Tibet).


119 base sites in Germany; 119 in Japan; 73 in South Korea; 44 in Italy.

Others in Aruba, Bahrain, Cuba, Djibouti, Estonia, Greece, Honduras, Ireland, Jordan, Kenya, Marshall Islands, Norway, Oman, Philippines, Qatar, Romania, Spain, Tunisia, UK, US Virgins, Wake Island.


  • Global Gini inequality, Life Expectancy and Child Mortality indices

What is the relationship between Gini and life expectancy?

The Gini coefficient by itself explained 43.3% of the variation in life expectancy at birth (model 1). When per capita income was introduced into the regression (model 4), the strength of the association between the Gini coefficient and life expectancy increased

What is the relationship between income inequality and infant mortality rate?

Overall, results indicate that infants and neonates born in the US states that experienced a greater increase in income inequality since 1990 were more likely to die than those that were born in states with a smaller increase in income inequality.22 Oct 2019

Explaining the Gini coefficient

Developed by Italian statistician Corrado Gini in 1912, the Gini coefficient ranges from 0 to 1, but is often written as a percentage.

To offer two hypothetical examples, if a nation were to have absolute income equality, with every person earning the same amount, its Gini score would be 0 (0%). On the other hand, if one person earned all the income in a nation and the rest earned zero, the Gini coefficient would be 1 (100%).

Mathematically, the Gini coefficient is defined based on the Lorenz curve. The Lorenz curve plots the percentiles of the population on the graph’s horizontal axis according to income or wealth, whichever is being measured. The cumulative income or wealth of the population is plotted on the vertical axis.

Limitations of the Gini coefficient

While the Gini coefficient is a useful tool for analyzing the wealth or income distribution in a country, it does not indicate that country’s overall wealth or income. Some of the world’s poorest countries, such as the Central African Republic, have some of the highest Gini coefficients (61.3 in this case). A high-income country and a low-income country can have the same Gini coefficients. Additionally, due to limitations such as reliable GDP and income data, the Gini index may overstate income inequality and be inaccurate.

Top 10 Countries with the Highest Gini Coefficients (%) – World Bank:

South Africa – 2014 – 63.0

Namibia – 2015 – 59.1

Suriname – 1999 – 57.9

Zambia – 2015 – 57.1

Sao Tome and Principe – 2017 – 56.3

Central African Republic – 2008 – 56.2

Eswatini – 2016 – 54.6

Mozambique – 2014 – 54.0

Brazil – 2019 – 53.4

Belize – 1999 – 53.3

Now for the good news:

Top 10 Countries with the Lowest Gini Coefficients (%) – World Bank:

Slovenia – 2018 – 24.6

Czech Republic – 2018 – 25.0 (tie)

Slovakia – 2018 – 25.0 (tie)

Belarus – 2019 – 25.3

Moldova – 2018 – 25.7

United Arab Emirates – 2018 – 26.0

Iceland – 2017 – 26.1

Azerbaijan – 2005 – 26.6 (tie)

Ukraine – 2019 – 26.6 (tie)

Belgium – 2018 – 27.2

Life Expectancy of the World Population.

1 Hong Kong, 85.29, 2. Japan, 85.03 3. Macao, 84.68 4. Switzerland, 84.25, 5. Singapore, 84.07 6. Italy, 84.01, 7. Spain, 83.99 8. Australia, 83.94,9.  Channel Islands, 83.60, 10. Iceland, 83.52, and place in the list: Ireland 18, UK 29, Cuba, 45, US 46, China 64, Belarus 92, Russia 113, South Africa 167, (64.88 years),

Life expectancy at birth. Data based on the latest United Nations Population Division estimates,

Infant Mortality Rate

Infant Mortality Rate is number of deaths per 1,000 live births, 2021 followed by population.

Afghanistan, 110.6, 39,835,428, Somalia, 94.8, 16,359,504, Central African Republic, 86.3, 4,919,981, Guinea Bissau, 85.7, 2,015,494, Chad, 85.4, 16,914,985, Niger, 81.1, 25,130,817, Burkina Faso, 72.2, 21,497,096, Nigeria, 69.8, 211, 400,708, Mali, 69.5, 20,855,735, Sierra Leone, 68.4, 8,141,343, DR Congo, 68.2, 92,377,993, Just rate: South Africa 31, China 12, Russia, 6.8 US 5.8 Cuba, 4.4, 3.6. UK, 4,3, Ireland, 3.6, Belarus, 3.6.

World Population Review,

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