New Data Show FDI Plummeted Over the Past Four Years

The latest foreign direct investment (FDI) data released by BEA show that international companies invested $177 billion into the United States in 2020. For context, that is the lowest level in over a decade. Certainly, the pandemic played a role in that total, but 2020’s level also marks a staggering 63 percent drop in annual FDI flows over the previous administration’s four years in office.

Nancy McLernon, president and CEO of the Global Business Alliance, on today’s BEA data release:

“For decades, the world’s biggest companies have flocked to the United States, attracted by our skilled workforce, diverse consumer base and entrepreneurial business climate. They’ve created millions of good-paying American jobs and revitalized many communities. But as today’s meager cross-border investment data show, foreign direct investment has plummeted through four years of a highly chaotic and oftentimes protectionist trade policy environment. Fortunately, change could be afoot. President Biden has pledged to restore America as a manufacturing powerhouse. He can do so by rolling out the welcome mat for international job creators.”

Additional FDI Facts

    • There are 7.8 million U.S. workers employed by international companies
    • International companies employ 22 percent of America’s manufacturing workforce. In fact, according to BEA data, international companies created 80 percent of all new U.S. manufacturing jobs over the past five years
    • U.S. workers at international companies earn about $82,600 annually, 20 percent more than the average American worker

About the Global Busines Alliance

As the premier voice of international companies in the United States, the Global Business Alliance (GBA) actively promotes and defends an open economy that welcomes international companies to invest in America. Our members are American companies with global heritage and an indispensable part of our nation’s economic success. When America is open for business, we all benefit. Learn more about how international companies are benefiting U.S. workers and communities by visiting