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Quick Facts about USA

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Population: 290,342,554 (July 2003)

Languages: English , Spanish (spoken by a sizable minority)

Political system: Constitution-based federal republic; strong democratic tradition

Capital: Washington, DC

Education: 97 % literate

Culture: white 77.1% ; black 12.9% ; Asian 4.2% ; Amerindian and Alaska native 1.5% ; native Hawaiian and other Pacific islander 0.3% ; other 4%

Religions: Protestant 56% , Roman Catholic 28% , Jewish 2% , other 4% , none 10%

Age structure: 0-14 years: 20.9% (male:31,098,473; female:29,675,712)
15-64 years: 66.7% (male:96,628,469; female:97,061,559)
65 years and over: 12.4% (male:14,888,185; female:20,990,156)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $37,600 (2002 .est)

Terrain: Vast central plain, mountains in west, hills and low mountains in east; rugged mountains and broad river valleys in Alaska; rugged, volcanic topography in Hawaii

Climate: Mostly temperate, but tropical in Hawaii and Florida, arctic in Alaska, semiarid in the great plains west of the Mississippi River, and arid in the Great Basin of the southwest; low winter temperatures in the northwest are ameliorated occasionally in January and February by warm chinook winds from the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains