The Countries With the Biggest Black Markets in the World, in One Fascinating Interactive



It looks like the United States is still No. 1 at something.

The U.S. has the largest black market in the world, amounting to $625.5 billion, according to information compiled by HavocScope, a research firm focused on measuring the size of illegal markets around the world. China comes in second, with a black market size of $261 billion, followed by Mexico with a value of $126 billion.

Data visualization company VisualAssessment put together the fascinating interactive above to explore the size and scope of the world's black markets. Click on the interactive to launch the full version.


Chart: HavocScope

Counterfeit drugs, prostitution, and counterfeit electronics are the most trafficked illegal products worldwide, accounting for a combined $355 billion. Corruption and money laundering are ommitted from HavocScope's assessment due to their "overlapping nature."

Chart: HavocScope

According to HavocScope, the estimated value of the global black market comes in around $1.81 trillion, which is determined by averaging the combined values of 50 contraband products and illegal activities ($1.63 trillion) with the total value of criminal markets in 91 countries ($1.98 trillion).

Visualization credit: visual-assessment.com

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