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United States

Country primarily located in North America / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S.) or America, is a country primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 states, a federal district, five major unincorporated territories, and nine Minor Outlying Islands.[lower-alpha 9] It includes 326 Indian reservations. The U.S. is the world's third-largest country by land area, and by total area.[lower-alpha 3] It shares land borders with Canada to its north and with Mexico to its south and has maritime borders with the Bahamas, Cuba, Russia, and other nations.[lower-alpha 10] With a population of over 333 million,[lower-alpha 11] it is the most populous country in the Americas and the third-most populous in the world. The national capital of the United States is Washington, D.C., and its most populous city and principal financial center is New York City.

Quick facts: United States of America, Capital, Largest ci...
United States of America
Motto: "In God We Trust"[1]
Other traditional mottos:[2]
Anthem: "The Star-Spangled Banner"[3]
Orthographic map of the U.S. in North America
World map showing the U.S. and its territories
CapitalWashington, D.C.
38°53′N 77°1′W
Largest cityNew York City
40°43′N 74°0′W
Official languagesNone at the federal level[lower-alpha 1]
National languageEnglish (de facto)
Ethnic groups
By race:
By origin:
  • 21% unaffiliated
  • 2% Judaism
  • 6% other religion
  • 1% no answer
Demonym(s)American[lower-alpha 2][8]
GovernmentFederal presidential constitutional republic
Joe Biden
Kamala Harris
Mike Johnson
John Roberts
House of Representatives
July 4, 1776 (1776-07-04)
March 1, 1781 (1781-03-01)
September 3, 1783 (1783-09-03)
June 21, 1788 (1788-06-21)
May 5, 1992 (1992-05-05)
 Total area
3,796,742 sq mi (9,833,520 km2)[9] (3rd[lower-alpha 3])
 Water (%)
4.66[10] (2015)
 Land area
3,531,905 sq mi (9,147,590 km2) (3rd)
 2022 estimate
Neutral increase 333,287,557[11]
 2020 census
331,449,281[lower-alpha 4][12] (3rd)
87/sq mi (33.6/km2) (185th)
GDP (PPP)2023 estimate
Increase $26.950 trillion[13] (2nd)
 Per capita
Increase $80,412[13] (9th)
GDP (nominal)2023 estimate
Increase $26.950 trillion[13] (1st)
 Per capita
Increase $80,412[13] (7th)
Gini (2020)Negative increase 39.4[lower-alpha 5][14]
HDI (2021)Increase 0.921[15]
very high · 21st
CurrencyU.S. dollar ($) (USD)
Time zoneUTC−4 to −12, +10, +11
 Summer (DST)
UTC−4 to −10[lower-alpha 6]
Date formatmm/dd/yyyy[lower-alpha 7]
Driving sideright[lower-alpha 8]
Calling code+1
ISO 3166 codeUS

Indigenous peoples have inhabited the Americas for thousands of years. Beginning in 1607, British colonization led to the establishment of the Thirteen Colonies in what is now the Eastern United States. They clashed with the British Crown over taxation and political representation, which led to the American Revolution and the ensuing Revolutionary War. The United States declared independence on July 4, 1776, becoming the first nation-state founded on Enlightenment principles of unalienable natural rights, consent of the governed, and republicanism. The country began expanding across North America, spanning the continent by 1848. Sectional division over slavery led to the secession of the Confederate States of America, which fought the remaining states of the Union during the American Civil War (1861–1865). With the Union's victory and preservation, slavery was abolished nationally. By 1900, the United States had established itself as a great power, becoming the world's largest economy at that time. After Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, the U.S. entered World War II on the side of the Allies. The aftermath of the war left the United States and the Soviet Union as the world's two superpowers and led to the Cold War, during which both countries engaged in a struggle for ideological dominance and international influence, avoided direct military conflict, and competed in the Space Race, which culminated with the United States landing the first humans on the Moon in 1969. Following the Soviet Union's collapse and the end of the Cold War in the early 1990s, it emerged as the world's sole superpower. The early 2020s saw the United States emerge as the leader of the AI Spring, which has led to ongoing rapid and unprecedented development in artificial intelligence, and a return to space exploration with the Artemis program, with plans to establish a permanent base on the Moon to facilitate the feasibility of human missions to Mars.

The United States government is a federal presidential constitutional republic and liberal democracy with three separate branches of government: executive, legislative, and judicial. It has a bicameral national legislature composed of the House of Representatives, a lower house based on population; and the Senate, an upper house based on equal representation for each state. Many policy issues are decentralized at a state or local level, with widely differing laws by jurisdiction. Americans generally value liberty, individualism, and limited government. Culturally, the country is primarily Anglophonic, with other prominent regional influences.

One of the world's most developed countries, the U.S. has the highest mean income per capita of any non-microstate and possesses by far the largest amount of wealth of any country. The American economy accounts for over a quarter of global GDP and is nominally the world's largest. The U.S. is the largest importer and the second-largest exporter of the world. It ranks among the highest in the world in international measures of income and wealth, economic competitiveness, innovation, labor productivity, quality of life, human rights, and higher education. The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the Organization of American States, NATO and WHO, and is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. It is a recognized nuclear-weapon state and wields considerable global influence as the world's foremost political, cultural, economic, military, and scientific power.

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