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Back to School, Back to Basics

Wed Sep 11 2019
Written by: The Trade Outreach Branch
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More than 300 million students yearly attend schools, colleges and universities worldwide. In the current digital environment, pencils, pens and notebooks aren’t always the first school supplies that come to mind. In many cases, classes are virtual and students use digital applications to take notes and complete projects. Attending classes locally isn’t always the only option; students  may now be thousands of miles apart on different continents. In this new virtual world, laptops, headphones and mobile phones have become necessities for many aspiring and current students globally.

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Back-to-school consumer spending usually begins in late July, with parents and students searching for the latest and greatest technology to start the school year off right. This means millions of dollars are spent annually on these products. But which are the most popular – and which countries are the biggest exporters/importers of them?

This lucrative global industry has many interested in selling these types of products. USA Trade Online provides this information and more. Let’s look at which of these devices were exported and imported the most, and to or from where.

In 2018, the U.S. exported $5.4 billion in laptops, $576.4 million in headphones and $10.5 billion in mobile phones. During that same year, the United States imported $39.7 billion in laptops, $1.5 billion in headphones and $52.9 billion in mobile phones. So where were they all exported to and imported from? Here are the top countries importing and exporting laptops, headphones and mobile phones to and from the United States:

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The data were pulled by using the first six digits of the Schedule B number, also known as Schedule B subheading. Laptops are under the Schedule B subheading 8471.30 “Portable automatic data processing machines.” Headphones are under the subheading 8518.30 “Headphones and earphones, whether or not combined with a microphone...,” Mobile phones are under the subheading 8517.12 “Telephones for cellular networks or for other wireless networks.” For additional information on Schedule B numbers, please see the Finding Your Schedule B Number blog.

Would you like to know more about U.S. imports or exports? Check out USA Trade Online for detailed statistics or contact the Macro Analysis Branch at 1-800-549-0595, Option #4. Statistics on USA Trade Online are not seasonally adjusted.

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