It has been about nine years since the United States fell into the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The period of the recession was marked by high unemployment rate and inflation. The country has recovered from the worst of the recession, although the recovery has been slow and steady. The unemployment has fallen below 5% nationally. In some states, the unemployment rate was as low as 2% in 2017 while in other states the rate was as high as 7% in the same year. Some states have completely bounced back while others are still on their way to complete recovery.
The Strongest Economies in America
Although some of the most populous states in the US like Florida, California, and Texas are among the best economies in the US, it is Colorado that tops the list. Colorado has a population of approximately 5.5 million people. Its economy has expanded rapidly in recent years. The state has the lowest unemployment rate in the US at 2.3%. The annual employment rate of 2.9% and GDP growth of 3% over a period of five years (2011-2016) are the 3rd and 4th highest respectively among the US states. Colorado was ranked 4th in terms of ease of doing business.
Utah is one of the fastest growing economies in the US. Its GDP of approximately $136.19 billion is the 19th smallest of all states. The GDP grew at an annualized rate of 2.9% over five years (2011-2016), the 6th fastest in the US. The unemployment rate in Utah is about 3.2%. However, the 3.4% annual employment growth rate between 2011 and 2016 was the 4th highest growth. Economic improvement in the past few years has led to one of the lowest unemployment rates in the US.
Washington has a population of approximately 7.2 million people. The 2016 GDP of $414.18 billion was the 14th largest of all states. The economy of Washington is driven by manufacturing industry, shipping, and technology. Its annual employment growth rate of 2.5% over five years spanning 2011-2016 has been the 24th fastest of all states while the GDP growth rate of 2.9% over the same period has been the fastest growing. Washington is the 4th best place to do business.
The economy of California is the largest in the US. However, the high cost of living makes it difficult for people to settle there. It boasts of a GDP of $2.30 trillion. California is the best place to do business in the US. Although the rate of unemployment (4.7%) is relatively high, the employment rate of 2.8% over the last five years was the 29th fastest growth of all states. During the same period, the economy grew by 3.2%, the 5th largest growth of all states.
Other states in the US with the best economies include Florida, Oregon, Idaho, Texas, Massachusetts, and Delaware. Florida’s economy is the second-fastest growing while Oregon’s is the 3rd-fastest growing. Massachusetts is the second-best place to do business after California.
Ranking of States
Economies of states are ranked by arrays of economic indicators ranging from employment, business environment, and growth. Growth measures the economic future of a state and is an indicator of emerging locations for business. Employment evaluates the unemployment rate, job growth, and the rate of participation in the labor force. Business environment analyses business birth rate and total patents granted. Other factors considered include a number of businesses headquartered in a state and overall tax burden.