Arts and Cultural Production Satellite Account (ACPSA)


The ACPSA is updated annually.


Partnership between the National Endowment for the Arts’ Office of Research & Analysis and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis

Research Topic

The arts economy

Notable Features

Inflation-adjusted estimates of arts and culture’s contributions to U.S. GDP

Full time-series spans 1998-2021, with estimates also including:

Value added to U.S. GDP

Gross output

Employment and compensation by arts and cultural industries

Supply and consumption of arts and cultural goods and services, including imports and exports

Gross output price indexes for arts and cultural commodities

Economic multipliers for arts and cultural commodities and employment


This wave of the ACPSA measures the impact the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic had on the arts economy.

This release shows new estimates for 2021, in addition to providing revised data for 2017-2021.


Covering the full year of 2021, the new dataset shows a sharp rebound for most of the largest arts and cultural industries after the disastrous first year of COVID-19 in the U.S. Between 2020 and 2021, the arts economy grew by 13.7 percent in inflation-adjusted dollars. This year-over-year rate increase far surpassed that for the entire U.S. economy (+5.9 percent).

Despite economic progress, some core arts industries have yet to reach their pre-pandemic levels. This is true of independent artists (as an industry), performing arts organizations, and arts-related construction, among others. When it comes to employment, in particular, the majority of arts and cultural industries (23 out of 35) have not returned to 2019 levels. All the same, the sector as a whole contributed more than $1 trillion to U.S. GDP in 2021, a new high-water mark.