While some contend that a list of the best states for business is nothing more than the best of a list of states in a severely challenged economic position and job market, Forbes magazine surged ahead with its list of the best states for business in 2013, according to Yahoo! News on Tuesday.
If you think that’s being too harsh, consider that just a week ago the United States Federal Chairman, Ben Bernanke, said that conditions in the job market today are still far from what all of us would like to see. Of course, course the economy and businesses are reflective of the job market in the nation.
Nonetheless, Forbes forged ahead with its list of the best states in the nation for business. In the publication’s eighth annual list, Virginia tops the list. It returns to the top spot – which it was in 2009 – after spending the past three years at number two on the list.
Forbes says that it considers six factors for states’ business success criteria which include costs, labor supply, the current economic climate, the regulatory environment, growth prospects, and the quality of life in the state. Via the criteria, the state of Virginia is the only one of the states that ranks in the top five in four areas – every category except costs and growth prospects.
The report reveals that Virginia is first in the regulatory category due to it being business-friendly in relation to government policies and its strong incentive offerings. Also assisting the business environment in Virginia is the fact that tech companies are expanding greatly there.
The only drawback to Virginia’s success story is that approximately 30 percent of Virginia’s economy is linked to the federal government – including strong via Department of Defense contracts – which is constantly threatened by sequestration and governmental spending fallouts.
North Dakota, which has had the nation’s best economic growth over the past five years, came in a close second on the list.
Utah, last year’s number one state on the list fell to number three for the first time since 2009. While Utah still does quite well - compared to the other states in the nation – the state fell due to a slowing of job growth and income growth over the past year.
Via an improved economic outlook and very good score for quality of life, Minnesota is the strongest gainer on this year’s list – moving from 20 to number 8. Wyoming took the hugest tumble – from 15 to number 23 –future business expectations are of concern there due to the state’s sluggish economy.
The Top Ten States for Business and Careers in 2013
- North Dakota
- North Carolina
Ranking from number 11 through 20 on the list – in order – are: South Dakota, Iowa, Massachusetts, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Oregon, and Delaware.
Ranking from number 21 through 25 on the list – in order – are: New York, Florida, Wyoming, Arizona, and Idaho.