What can the data in this interactive tell us?
The largest North American trade flows
When choosing "All metro areas" (the default) as your metro area selection, the map will depict the largest trade flows between metro areas in the United States, Mexico, and Canada (where a U.S. metro area is either an importer or exporter).
By selecting different commodities, you will see how the biggest nodes of production and consumption in North America vary by what is being produced and consumed.
Each metro area's largest trading partners
Selecting a metro area (by searching in the menu or clicking on the map) will reveal that metro area's largest trading partners. As described above, this often changes dramatically by the commodity you are viewing. In addition, when viewing data for a specific metro area, you can view the map by "trade flow direction"—export flows from the selected metro area, imports to the area, or total trade to and from the metro area.
Sources & methods
The trade flows depicted here represent value as of 2010, in U.S. Dollars. To estimate trade flow, Brookings worked with the Economic Development Research Group (EDR) to create a database that assigns data on national goods trade to metropolitan areas. The database does not attempt to quantify flows between Canadian and Mexican metropolitan areas. For more on methodology, see the report associated with this interactive.
Advanced industries are defined here as trade in aircraft and spacecraft, electronics and electrical equipment, machinery, motor vehicles and parts, pharmaceutical products, and precision instruments.