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London Economy

London generates approximately 20 per cent of the UK's GDP (or $446 billion in 2005); while the economy of the London metropolitan area—the largest in Europe—generates approximately 30 per cent of the UK's GDP (or an estimated $669 billion in 2005). London is one of the pre-eminent financial centres of the world and vies with New York City as the most important location for international finance

London's largest industry is finance, and its financial exports make it a large contributor to the UK's balance of payments. Around 325,000 people were employed in financial services in London until mid-2007. London has over 480 overseas banks, more than any other city in the world. Currently, over 85% (3.2 million) of the employed population of greater London works in the services industries. Due to its prominent global role, London's economy has been affected by the global financial crisis of 2008–2009. The City of London estimates that 70,000 jobs in finance will be cut within a year. The City of London is home to the Bank of England, London Stock Exchange, and Lloyds of London insurance market.

More than half of the UK's top 100 listed companies (the FTSE 100) and over 100 of Europe's 500 largest companies are headquartered in Central London. Over 70 per cent of the FTSE 100 are located within London's metropolitan area, and 75 per cent of Fortune 500 companies have offices in London
Canary Wharf is a major business and financial centre and is home to some of the UK's tallest buildings

Along with professional services, media companies are concentrated in London and the media distribution industry is London's second most competitive sector.The BBC is a significant employer, while other broadcasters also have headquarters around the City. Many national newspapers are edited in London. London is a major retail centre and in 2010 had the highest non-food retail sales of any city in the world, with a total spend of around £64.2 billion. The Port of London is the second-largest in the United Kingdom, handling 45 million tonnes of cargo each year.

London has five major business districts: the City, Westminster, Canary Wharf, Camden & Islington and Lambeth & Southwark. One way to get an idea of their relative importance is to look at relative amounts of office space: Greater London had 26,721,000 m2 of office space in 2001, and the City contains the most space, with over 7.7 million m2 of office space.

Tourism
Tourism is one of London's prime industries and employs the equivalent of 350,000 full-time workers in London in 2003, while annual expenditure by tourists is around £15 billion. London attracts over 15 million international visitors per year, making it the world's most visited city.  London attracts 27 million overnight-stay visitors every year.