thumbnailThe Economics and Statistics Administration, an arm of the U.S. government, and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office have issued a report on the importance of intellectual property (patents, trademarks and copyrights) to the U.S. economy.   According to the report, as of 2010 over 27 million people are employed directly in industries identified by the PTO as ‘IP-intensive,’ which accounts for almost 19% of all U.S. employment.  Supply chain employment to feed those IP-intensive industries amounts to another 12.9 million jobs, for a total of 40 million jobs, or 27.7 % of all U.S. employment either directly or indirectly reliant on IP-intensive industries.

The reports notes that persons employed in the IP-intensive industries are better educated and paid better than their non IP-intensive counterparts.  The IP-intensive industries are recovering from the recession faster than other industries and the IP-intensive industries account for over 60% of all U.S. exports of merchandise.

In short, intellectual property is important and companies in industrial sectors that utilize intellectual property are more prosperous than companies in industrial sectors that do not.  We should note that the PTO is not an entirely neutral observer here.  The more important the role of patent and trademarks to the U.S. economy, the more important the role of the PTO.

— Robert Yarbrough, Esq.