View industries with the greatest increases and decreases in lobbying spending by quarter and by year.

Each time we report the latest figures on federal lobbying activity — reports are due each quarter — everyone wants to know what's up with the industry they care about, as well as overall lobbying trends. Has there been more lobbying? Less? The following table shows the number of active lobbyists and the total spent on lobbying — and compares these figures for whatever quarterly reports have been processed so far this year to the figures for the comparable period in prior years.

Year Total Spent Number of Lobbyists
2020 $1,758,772,038 10,937
2019 $1,758,801,068 11,099
2018 $1,763,470,668 10,959
2017 $1,689,274,657 10,700
2016 $1,618,305,152 10,677
2015 $1,652,593,465 10,834
2014 $1,641,751,693 11,113
2013 $1,627,950,827 11,318
2012 $1,674,371,369 11,563
2011 $1,672,244,125 11,758
2010 $1,805,198,996 12,110
2009 $1,663,772,914 12,678
2008 $1,647,168,132 13,160

Period Comparison

This interactive tool allows you to answer the questions of who's up and who's down yourself. Just select the comparison period (a full year or just one quarter) and then view the total spent on lobbying that quarter, the number of lobbyists employed and the percent change for each industry we profile. Spending and percentage change information is provided at both the industry level and the sector level. Each industry is contained in just one of the 13 broad sectors the Center for Responsive Politics tracks. For example, the health sector (listed in the top table) is the sum of all health-related industries (listed in the bottom table), such as pharmaceuticals, hospitals, health professionals, etc.

NOTE: You can only compare an entire year to another entire year, or a quarter to another quarter.

Period Summary

Period Total Spent Number of Lobbyists
2020 2nd Quarter $820,791,187 9,756
2019 2nd Quarter $859,938,990 10,694

Sectors

Sector 2020Q2 2019Q2 Difference Change
Energy & Natural Resources $65,169,419 $78,786,953 $13,617,534 20.90%
Other $51,664,057 $61,404,147 $9,740,090 18.90%
Misc Business $112,269,173 $121,741,273 $9,472,100 8.40%
Ideological/Single-Issue $31,884,531 $38,800,965 $6,916,434 21.70%
Transportation $60,640,991 $67,438,782 $6,797,791 11.20%
Finance, Insurance & Real Estate $121,514,000 $125,019,219 $3,505,219 2.90%
Agribusiness $32,621,363 $36,021,580 $3,400,217 10.40%
Communications/Electronics $106,472,515 $108,962,763 $2,490,248 2.30%
Construction $13,696,884 $15,972,003 $2,275,119 16.60%
Defense $24,053,581 $25,839,519 $1,785,938 7.40%
Lawyers & Lobbyists $3,136,000 $3,990,756 $854,756 27.30%
Labor $11,993,378 $12,617,764 $624,386 5.20%
Health $144,659,067 $144,353,840 -$305,227 -0.20%

Industries

Industry 2020Q2 2019Q2 Difference Change
Non-Profit Institutions $8,035,960 $15,399,556 $7,363,596 91.60%
Oil & Gas $23,858,606 $30,139,687 $6,281,081 26.30%
Electric Utilities $23,006,982 $28,845,937 $5,838,955 25.40%
Business Associations $23,435,676 $28,079,413 $4,643,737 19.80%
Automotive $14,408,463 $18,042,824 $3,634,361 25.20%
Health Professionals $20,270,552 $23,588,856 $3,318,304 16.40%
Human Rights $10,187,843 $13,064,566 $2,876,723 28.20%
Defense Aerospace $7,592,211 $10,105,275 $2,513,064 33.10%
TV/Movies/Music $12,466,382 $14,674,548 $2,208,166 17.70%
Construction Services $3,018,464 $5,188,191 $2,169,727 71.90%
Misc Manufacturing & Distributing $25,416,892 $27,404,223 $1,987,331 7.80%
Agricultural Services/Products $7,810,443 $9,744,050 $1,933,607 24.80%
Misc Issues $10,265,110 $11,861,421 $1,596,311 15.60%
Railroads $5,589,132 $7,052,338 $1,463,206 26.20%
Commercial Banks $14,534,772 $15,969,579 $1,434,807 9.90%
Accountants $3,975,000 $5,275,000 $1,300,000 32.70%
Education $19,545,063 $20,791,287 $1,246,224 6.40%
Crop Production & Basic Processing $4,878,114 $6,081,815 $1,203,701 24.70%
Forestry & Forest Products $2,951,492 $4,086,708 $1,135,216 38.50%
Chemical & Related Manufacturing $9,397,623 $10,331,940 $934,317 9.90%
Printing & Publishing $2,440,370 $3,348,306 $907,936 37.20%
Hospitals/Nursing Homes $25,603,800 $26,495,942 $892,142 3.50%
Air Transport $25,844,244 $26,678,317 $834,073 3.20%
Environment $4,354,736 $5,185,212 $830,476 19.10%
Mining $4,178,410 $5,001,000 $822,590 19.70%
Gun Rights $2,154,178 $2,950,165 $795,987 37.00%
Republican/Conservative $1,109,200 $1,903,600 $794,400 71.60%
Pharmaceuticals/Health Products $70,640,935 $71,418,904 $777,969 1.10%
Electronics Mfg & Equip $38,723,216 $39,450,114 $726,898 1.90%
Other $3,447,335 $4,152,803 $705,468 20.50%
Retail Sales $11,462,500 $12,120,750 $658,250 5.70%
Lawyers/Law Firms $2,768,500 $3,421,006 $652,506 23.60%
Steel Production $2,343,849 $2,928,388 $584,539 24.90%
Casinos/Gambling $8,122,529 $8,592,696 $470,167 5.80%
Insurance $37,889,915 $38,318,765 $428,850 1.10%
Misc Energy $11,362,721 $11,785,766 $423,045 3.70%
Industrial Unions $1,675,766 $2,082,245 $406,479 24.30%
Telephone Utilities $7,854,224 $8,243,813 $389,589 5.00%
Misc Transport $5,480,610 $5,865,514 $384,904 7.00%
Dairy $1,562,767 $1,939,398 $376,631 24.10%
Marijuana $954,000 $1,330,000 $376,000 39.40%
Misc Business $2,294,654 $2,652,107 $357,453 15.60%
Finance/Credit Companies $6,772,185 $7,120,732 $348,547 5.10%
Civil Servants/Public Officials $19,489,034 $19,783,001 $293,967 1.50%
Sea Transport $6,746,196 $7,023,687 $277,491 4.10%
Transportation Unions $3,454,879 $3,730,697 $275,818 8.00%
Beer, Wine & Liquor $7,018,598 $7,291,994 $273,396 3.90%
Securities & Investment $23,742,972 $24,006,948 $263,976 1.10%
Building Materials & Equipment $4,750,088 $4,999,903 $249,815 5.30%
Foreign & Defense Policy $1,005,000 $1,251,000 $246,000 24.50%
Misc Defense $11,423,370 $11,653,015 $229,645 2.00%
Fisheries & Wildlife $615,450 $843,813 $228,363 37.10%
Business Services $7,201,985 $7,409,765 $207,780 2.90%
Trucking $2,572,346 $2,776,102 $203,756 7.90%
Lobbyists $367,500 $569,750 $202,250 55.00%
Savings & Loans $430,000 $620,000 $190,000 44.20%
Home Builders $1,799,783 $1,944,000 $144,217 8.00%
Clergy & Religious Organizations $1,146,665 $1,277,500 $130,835 11.40%
Tobacco $6,480,000 $6,608,750 $128,750 2.00%
Food & Beverage $6,135,338 $6,231,999 $96,661 1.60%
Pro-Israel $874,175 $964,578 $90,403 10.30%
Gun Control $510,000 $590,000 $80,000 15.70%
Waste Management $994,000 $1,074,000 $80,000 8.00%
Special Trade Contractors $1,227,664 $1,289,979 $62,315 5.10%
Building Trade Unions $1,429,000 $1,475,000 $46,000 3.20%
Democratic/Liberal $130,000 $170,000 $40,000 30.80%
Poultry & Eggs $290,000 $325,000 $35,000 12.10%
Abortion Policy/Anti-Abortion $230,000 $260,000 $30,000 13.00%
Misc Unions $1,791,733 $1,773,822 -$17,911 -1.00%
Credit Unions $1,940,000 $1,914,500 -$25,500 -1.30%
Lodging/Tourism $4,016,500 $3,970,500 -$46,000 -1.10%
Environmental Svcs/Equipment $1,153,250 $1,096,750 -$56,500 -4.90%
Misc Finance $8,498,342 $8,424,366 -$73,976 -0.90%
Misc Agriculture $540,000 $459,308 -$80,692 -14.90%
Public Sector Unions $3,642,000 $3,556,000 -$86,000 -2.40%
Women's Issues $397,420 $286,200 -$111,220 -28.00%
Textiles $390,000 $270,000 -$120,000 -30.80%
Misc Services $1,503,927 $1,331,750 -$172,177 -11.40%
Misc Communications/Electronics $645,000 $416,000 -$229,000 -35.50%
Livestock $1,055,625 $812,841 -$242,784 -23.00%
General Contractors $2,900,885 $2,549,930 -$350,955 -12.10%
Abortion Policy/Pro-Abortion Rights $666,869 $314,223 -$352,646 -52.90%
Real Estate $23,730,814 $23,369,329 -$361,485 -1.50%
Internet $18,931,102 $18,354,132 -$576,970 -3.00%
Misc Health $3,092,070 $2,327,573 -$764,497 -24.70%
Recreation/Live Entertainment $2,575,102 $1,795,748 -$779,354 -30.30%
Telecom Services $25,412,221 $24,475,850 -$936,371 -3.70%
Defense Electronics $5,038,000 $4,081,229 -$956,771 -19.00%
Food Processing & Sales $7,052,922 $5,963,710 -$1,089,212 -15.40%
Health Services/HMOs $25,051,710 $20,522,565 -$4,529,145 -18.10%

NOTE: Figures on this page are calculations by the Center for Responsive Politics based on data from the Senate Office of Public Records. Data for the most recent year was downloaded on July 23, 2020 and includes spending from January 1 - June 30. Prior years include spending from January through December.

Feel free to distribute or cite this material, but please credit the Center for Responsive Politics. For permission to reprint for commercial uses, such as textbooks, contact the Center: info[at]crp.org