State now at 26th in country.
Arizona’s Business Ranking Falls in Forbes Study
“Though hammered during the recession, Arizona’s outlook is strong,” the study noted. “The Grand Canyon state’s job and economic growth forecasts over the next five years are among the best in the U.S. Population growth through 2020 is expected to be the third fastest in the country.”
The study ranked states according to business costs, labor supply, regulatory environment, current economic climate, growth prospects, and quality of life.
Although Arizona scored well (fifth in the country) in growth prospects, it didn’t get as high marks for business costs (30th). Voters’ recent decision to raise the minimum wage to $10 an hour in January, with more increases after that, might further hurt its ranking in the business costs category. And the state ranked 28th for its regulatory environment, despite Gov. Doug Ducey’s efforts to lighten the burden on business owners.
Utah topped the 2016 list of best states for business, while West Virginia came in last. Aside from Utah and Colorado (fifth on the list), Arizona ranked higher than its neighbors: California (30th), Nevada (32nd), and New Mexico (46th).
In a different Forbes study released in October, Tucson and Phoenix were both among the top 10 cities in the country for job growth.