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Miami Economy
 
 
 

Miami is one of the country’s most important financial centers. It is a major centre of commerce, finances, corporate headquarters and boasts a strong international business community. According to the ranking of world cities undertaken by the Globalization and World Cities Study Group & Network (GaWC) and based on the level of presence of global corporate service organisations, Miami is considered a “Gamma World City”.

Several large companies are headquartered in or around Miami, including but not limited to: Alienware, Arquitectonica, Arrow Air, Bacardi, Benihana, Brightstar Corporation, Burger King, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Corporation, Carnival Cruise Lines, CompUSA, Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Espírito Santo Financial Group, Fizber.com, Greenberg Traurig, Interval International, Lennar, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Perry Ellis International, RCTV International, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Ryder Systems, Seabourn Cruise Line, Telefónica USA, TeleFutura, Telemundo, Univision, US Century Bank and World Fuel Services. Because of its proximity to Latin America, Miami serves as the headquarters of Latin American operations for more than 1400 multinational corporations, including AIG, American Airlines, Cisco, Disney, Exxon, FedEx, Kraft Foods, Microsoft, Oracle, SBC Communications, Sony and Visa International.

Miami International Airport and the Port of Miami are among the nation’s busiest ports of entry, especially for cargo from South America and the Caribbean. Additionally, Downtown has the largest concentration of international banks in the country located mostly in Brickell, Miami's financial district. Miami was also the host city of the 2003 Free Trade Area of the Americas negotiations, and is one of the leading candidates to become the trading bloc's headquarters.

Tourism is also an important industry in Miami. The beaches, conventions, festivals and events draw over 12 million visitors annually from across the country and around the world, spending $17.1 billion. The historical Art Deco district in South Beach, is widely regarded as one of the most glamorous in the world for its world-famous nightclubs, beaches, historical buildings and shopping. However, it is important to note that Miami Beach is a separate city from the City of Miami.

Miami is the home to the National Hurricane Center and the headquarters of the United States Southern Command, responsible for military operations in Central and South America. In addition to these roles, Miami is also an industrial centre, especially for stone quarrying and warehousing.

According to the US Census Bureau, in 2004, Miami had the third highest incidence of family incomes below the federal poverty line in the US, making it the third poorest city in the US, behind only Detroit, Michigan (ranked #1) and El Paso, Texas (ranked #2). Miami is also one of the very few cities where its local government went bankrupt, in 2001.

In 2005, the Miami area witnessed its largest real estate boom since the 1920s. Midtown, having well over a hundred approved construction projects, is an example of this. As of 2007, however, the housing market has crashed and more than 23,000 condos are for sale and/or foreclosed. The Miami area ranks 8th in the nation in foreclosures. Miami is also one of the least affordable places to live, with the median percentage of housing costs as a percentage of income was 42.8%; the national average was 27%. Miami ranks 12th among least affordable cities for home ownership.

 

 
 


 



 


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