4th Quarter 2016


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2016 FDI [ Graph and Maps ]


The state remains one of the top destinations for new foreign investment.

2016 FDI continued

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As noted earlier, comparing annual investments is problematic because of the outsized impact of one or two giant investments on the year's totals. While the 2016 numbers are not as impressive as those of the previous several years, it's not the case that foreign investment into the state is collapsing or is encountering some unexpected headwinds.

The reasons for the decline are as much the strengthened dollar (coming to the U.S. is harder when it costs more!), the continuing economic slowdown in many parts of the world, and that lack in 2016 of the giant mega-investments that we have been seeing in recent times.

In fact, employment and investment in the foreign-owned sector of the state's economy is continuing to grow faster than in its domestic counterpart. Last year, new employment generated by foreign investment grew about 18% faster than Tennessee's new employment overall. Between 4 and 5% of Tennessee's new employment came from foreign-owned operations.

Adjusted for the size of the Tennessee economy, the state remains one of the top destinations for new foreign investment. Foreign-owned operations continue to have an outsized impact on the state's growth and economic development.