Countries Spending the Most on the Military

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For the first time since 1998, global military spending is down. This coincides with a major decline in U.S. spending, which fell by more than $40 billion between 2011 and 2012. Even with this decline, however, the United States still had a military budget four times larger than China, the next biggest spender.The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) measures annual military spending for most of the world's armed countries. According to SIPRI, the United States spent $668 billion, more than the combined budgets of the next 10 countries. While the U.S. budget has declined, some of the other global powers, including Russia and China, have ramped up spending.

These are the countries spending the most on the military.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 10 countries that spend the most on their military in 2012, based on SIPRI's measure of military spending in more than 130 nations. We also reviewed SIPRI data on military exports and imports, as well as military expenditure as a percentage of GDP. From, we reviewed statistics on military size and strength, based on the most recent available data. We also considered GDP and GDP growth figures from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

By Samuel Weigley, 24/7 Wall St.

Originally published