The world's 100 largest economic units include 61 countries and 39 industrial corporations, the Conference Board reports. Based on 1978 data (the latest year for which official information is available), the analysis shows that 18 of the corporations are based in the United States and 21 foreign countries. Countries are ranked according to gross national product; companies are ranked according to annual sales.
General Motors tops the corporate list, coming in as the world's 23rd-largest economic unit, with 1978 sales of $63.2 billion. Exxon is 24th, with sales of $ 60.3 billion, followed by Royal Dutch/Shell, 30th ($44 billion); Ford, 31st ($42 .8 billion); Mobil, 38th ($34.7 billion); Texaco, 42nd ($28.6 billion); and British Petroleum, 43rd, ($27.4 billion); Standard Oil of California, 47th, ($23 .2 billion); National Iranian Oil, 49th, ($22.8 billion); and IBM, 52nd, ($21.1 billion).
The US is the top economic unit, with a GNP of $2.1 trillion, followed by the Soviet Union, with a 1978 GNP of $1.04 trillion, Japan ($727.9 billion); West Germany, ($513.1 billion); and France, ($411.3 billion).