IP Facts & Figures



  • Global trade in counterfeit goods has nearly doubled in value from 2008 to 2014 – amounting to $461 billion annually. That is more than double the 2014 profits of the world’s top ten companies, combined.
    – Measuring the Magnitude of Global Counterfeiting (The U.S. Chamber of Commerce)
  • Global trade in illegitimate goods increased from $5.5 billion in 1982 to approximately $600 billion annually today.
    The Global Risk of Product Counterfeiting (Michigan State University)
  •  Fake or counterfeit products—such as CDs, DVDs, software, electronic equipment, pharmaceuticals, and auto products—comprise five to seven percent of world trade. (The U.S. Department of Commerce)
  • Fake car parts alone cost the U.S. auto industry $12 billion each year.
    Counterfeit Culture (CBC News) The Global IP Center – Jobs Created by New Ideas:


  • Online piracy of U.S.-produced digital content such as music, film, and books costs the U.S. economy $60 billion per year.
    – Global IP Infringement’s Significant Cost to the U.S. Economy (Information Technology & Innovation Foundation)
  • According to the Council of State Governments, the U.S. economy loses $58 billion each year to copyright infringement. That includes $16 billion in the loss of revenue to copyright owners and $3 billion in lost tax revenue.
    Intellectual Property Theft: An Economic Antagonist (The Council of State Governments)
  • A Columbia University study conducted in 2012 found that 70% of young adults between 18 and 29 had illegally copied or downloaded music or video files.
    IP Theft: A Threat to U.S. Workers, Industries, and Our Economy  (Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO Fact Sheet)
  • Recorded music revenue is down 64% since 1999, per capita spending on music is 47 percent lower than it was in 1973, and the number of professional musicians has fallen 25 percent since 2000.
    IP Theft: A Threat to U.S. Workers, Industries, and Our Economy  (Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO Fact Sheet)
  • The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the National Endowment for the Arts estimates that the arts and culture sector of the economy (including includes motion picture and video production, advertising services, cable television production and distribution, publishing, and the performing arts) contributed $502 billion or 3.2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). 
    IP Theft: A Threat to U.S. Workers, Industries, and Our Economy  (Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO Fact Sheet)


  • In the 13 years between 1996 and 2008, patent owners have sued fifteen [mostly U.S.] technology corporations 740 times for infringement and have won $4 billion in damages.
    – Patent Theft as a Business Strategy (Huffington Post)
  • “Not surprisingly,” reports economist Pat Choate “these big tech corporations’ political goal is to change the law so patent theft is more difficult to prove, less costly when caught, and willful infringement virtually impossible to prove.”
  • “The principal victims of these big corporations’ ‘efficient infringement,’ are America’s independent inventors, small businesses, and universities – the source of most breakthrough innovations and the creators of two-thirds of all new jobs in America.”
    – Patent Theft as a Business Strategy (Huffington Post)
  • More than 4,000 startups were launched and over 3 million jobs were created since 1980 as a result of patented research and licensing. Over that period, 153 new FDA-approved drugs were identified.
    – The AUTM Briefing Book: 2015 (Association of University Technology Managers)


  • S&P 500 Index companies were valued at $8.1 trillion at the end of 2008. At that time the US the Chamber of Commerce estimated added value of IP rights, such as patents, trademarks, and copyrights, to be $5.06 trillion, or about two-thirds of the total S&P 500 market value at the time.
    – Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy (The U.S. Department of Commerce)
  • Based the 2016 S&P 500 Index company value ($19.3 trillion), the estimated added value of IP is $12.8 trillion.


  • Fifteen leading technology companies paid patent litigation damages of more than $4 billion over a 12-year period from 1996-2008.
    – Patent Theft as a Business Strategy (Huffington Post)
  • Today, with more patents than in force, and much greater difficulty securing a license or winning a patent lawsuit, the actual amount of patent infringement in the U.S. could be a trillion or more dollars.
  • There is no known government, academic or privately commissioned study of the extent of patent infringement in the U.S., and the cost in lost jobs, failed businesses and uncollected taxes.


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