[Marxism] US profits collapse in 4th qtr

chegitz guevara absynthe at gmail.com
Thu Mar 26 10:28:55 MDT 2009

On Thu, Mar 26, 2009 at 9:23 AM, Steve Palmer <spalmer999 at yahoo.com> wrote:
> Confirmation of the importance of imperialism to US capitalism's profitability is that receipts from rest of world were $479.8, 39.7% of total profits.
> http://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/national/gdp/2009/pdf/gdp408f.pdf

I would also note you neglected to mention receipts *to* the rest of
the world, i.e., what we're paying out. The adjusted rate is: $395.9
billion, or 31% of net profits. Also, you fail to mention that the
numbers are seasonally adjusted, *NOT* total. The *TOTAL* profits for
2008 were $1.4765 trillion The total profits from overseas were $539.4
billion ($386.6 adjusted for payments).

While Rate of profit is certainly important to understanding
imperialism (and keeping in mind that the Feds don't do our work for
us here, and break down trade by country) I think a better measure is
looking at GDP.

Our seasonally adjusted GDP for the 4th quarter was $14.2003 trillion.
Adding $711.6 billion in revenues from the rest of the world and
subtracting $557.7 billion in payments gives us a GNP of $14.3543
trillion. A little quick math tells us that the difference is one
percent of total GNP.

Now, here's what's fascinating, and points toward what Comrade Palmer
was getting at (though it doesn't prove it, because of the
aforementioned majority trade with other imperialist countries).
Almost two thirds of the revenue from other countries is realized as
profit (479.8/711.6). That's amazing! The RoP from domestic sources
($868.6 billion) is just over six percent (6.11%). The profits from
overseas trade is eleven times what domestic profits are.

Without breaking that down, we can't tell how much of that is from
imperialism and how much is from inter-imperialist trade. From 1990
data (for a term paper back when I was in school, back during the days
of the first Marxism email list) I concluded that approximately half
of our trade was with imperialists and the rest with the neo-colonial
world. I doubt that applies now.

your comade,

chegitz guevara

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