Governing.com Ranks Iowa #2 in Best State Economies

In a recent studying conducted by Governing.com which seeks to see if a correlation exists between successful state economies and popular governors.  This study has ranked Iowa as the 2nd strongest economy in the nation based on multiple factors.

  1. Econ GrowthWashington 12.1
  2. Iowa 12.3
  3. Texas 13.0
  4. Utah 13.4
  5. North Dakota 13.6
  6. Hawaii 14.0
  7. Minnesota 14.6
  8. Oregon 17.9
  9. West Virginia 18.0
  10. Alaska 18.7

To determine which states are doing well and which aren’t, we looked at five variables: the current state unemployment rate; improvement in the state unemployment rate over the past year; per capita state GDP in 2012; percent change in real state GDP between 2011 and 2012; and percent change in state personal income, from the fourth quarter of 2012 to the first quarter of 2013. These variables were chosen to measure both the state’s overall economic ranking among its peers as well as its improvement in recent months under the governor’s watch.

We ranked all 50 states on these variables, then created an average ranking for each state by double-weighting current unemployment and percent change in real GDP. We decided to focus on the top and bottom of the list because it’s hard to say whether the states in the broad middle have relatively strong or weak economies. Here are the 10 states with the healthiest economies. The number following the state is the weighted average ranking for the five variables we used. A rank of 1 in each category would produce an average rating of 1.0, while a rank of 50 would produce an average of 50.0.

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