Washington, DC, has 5.8 million people. Argentina has 40 million. But they have similar-sized economies. A chart from Statista, highlighted by Barry Ritholtz today, shows the countries with GDPs roughly comparable to those of US metro areas.
Major metro areas in the United States are huge economic powerhouses. New York has the economic output of the giant island of Australia. Another recent viral map showed that half of the US's GDP is created by just a handful of metro areas comprising a tiny fraction of US land mass.
Still, it's important to keep in mind that these figures are not adjusted for purchasing power parity, which takes into account the different costs of living in different countries. New Yorkers make a ton of money, but a lot of their income goes to pay inflated rents. If you use a PPP-adjusted version of GDP, many of the countries listed above look a bit different. The PPP-adjusted GDP of Malaysia, for example, is around $692 million — more than double its nominal GDP. Meanwhile, Australia's is around $1 trillion, not $1.5 trillion.