New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of one of the most populous urban agglomerations in the world—the New York metropolitan area. The city is referred to as New York City or the City of New York to distinguish it from the State of New York, of which it is a part. A global power city, New York exerts a significant impact upon commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and entertainment. The home of the United Nations Headquarters, New York is an important center for international diplomacy and has been described as the cultural and financial capital of the world.
On one of the world's largest natural harbors, New York City consists of five boroughs, each of which is a county of New York State. The five boroughs—the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island—were consolidated into a single city in 1898. With a census-estimated 2013 population of 8,405,837 distributed over a land area of just 305 square miles (790 km2), New York is the most densely populated major city in the United States. As many as 800 languages are spoken in New York, making it the most linguistically diverse city in the world. By 2013 census estimates, the New York Metropolitan Area's population remains by a significant margin the United States' largest Metropolitan Statistical Area, with approximately 19.9 million people, and is also part of the most populous Combined Statistical Area in the United States, containing an estimated 23.4 million people. New York's 2012 gross metropolitan product of over US$1.3 trillion ranked behind the GDP of only twelve nations.
Manhattan is the most densely populated of the five boroughs of New York City. The borough is coterminous with New York County, an original county of the U.S. state of New York. The borough consists mostly of Manhattan Island, bounded by the East, Hudson, and Harlem Rivers, but also includes several small adjacent islands and a small area on the mainland. Manhattan has been described as the economic and cultural center of the United States and is home to the United Nations Headquarters. Wall Street, in Lower Manhattan, has been called the financial capital of the world, and is home to the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. As of 2012[update], Manhattan's cost of living was the highest in the United States, but the borough also suffered the country's most profound level of income inequality. Many multinational media conglomerates are based in the borough.
New York County is the most densely populated county in the United States, more dense than any individual American city. It is one of the most densely populated areas in the world, with a Census-estimated 2013 population of 1,626,159 living in a land area of 22.96 square miles (59.5 km2), or about 70,826 residents per square mile (27,346/km²). On business days, the influx of commuters increases that number to over 3.9 million, or around 170,000 people per square mile. It is also one of the wealthiest jurisdictions, being the sole U.S. county whose per capita income exceeded $100,000 in 2010. Manhattan has the third-largest population of New York's five boroughs, after Brooklyn and Queens, and it is the smallest borough in land area.