BOFIT Viikkokatsaus / BOFIT Weekly 2018/30

This year's Fortune Global 500 (largest 500 firms in the world measured by total revenue converted to dollars) contains 111 Chinese firms (includes companies headquartered in Hong Kong). Nine Taiwanese firms made the list, along with seven Brazilian firms, seven Indian firms and four Russian firms. In 2ooo, only ten Chinese companies made the list. By 2017, that number had reached 109. 126 US firms made this year's list, along with 52 Japanese firms. The rankings are based on revenue and profits from the most recent financial year ending March 31 or earlier.

US retail giant Walmart continued to hold the top spot with annual revenues exceeding $500 billion. As in 2017, the second-, third- and fourth-place rankings went to China's state-owned energy giants State Grid, Sinopec Group and China National Petroleum, with revenues in the range of $326–349 billion. Of the 22 Chinese firms making it into the top 100, only Huawei (at the 72nd spot) is privately-held. Privately-held Anbang, CEFC, HNA and Wanda that last year were included in the Global 500, were left out this year. Despite high-enough revenues to make it to the list, Fortune said the firms were removed due to e.g. operational difficulties, and some of them being under legal or regulatory investigation.

US-based Apple, with profits over $48 billion, was the most profitable firm on the list. All big four of China's state banks (ICBC, CCB, ABC and BOC) made the top 10 most-profitable list.