How much is religion worth? More than Apple and Microsoft make in a year –– combined.
A recent study of the U.S. faith economy found religious goods, services and institutions are worth $1.2 trillion a year.
Religion might affect America's economy more than you realize. Congregations alone employ hundreds of thousands of people and purchase billions of dollars in goods.
Faith-based elementary schools receive over $15 billion in tuition annually — and that doesn't include middle schools or high schools.
Kosher and halal food sales account for almost another $15 billion. The study's authors didn't include holiday-centered food sales, either –– like your usual Christmas dinner menu. That would dramatically increase the faith economy's worth.
Religious health care networks also bring in over $160 billion each year.
And 20 of America's 50 largest charities are faith-based –– accounting for another $45 billion.
The researchers acknowledged their $1.2 trillion estimate is actually a conservative one. Their figure didn't account for the value of religious groups' physical or financial assets, which could make the estimate significantly bigger.