Greenwich, Connecticut (PRESS RELEASE – May 8, 2011) – For the seventh year in a row, CEOs rate Texas as the #1 state in which to do business and California as the worst. North Carolina maintained its #2 rank, while Florida rose three positions to the #3 spot. Tennessee fell one slot from last year to #4 while Georgia climbed two positions to claim the #5 rank.
Chief Executive Magazine’s annual “Best & Worst States” survey takes the pulse of CEOs on business conditions around the nation. For the 2011 survey, 550 CEOs from across the country evaluated the states on a broad range of issues, including regulations, tax policies, workforce quality, education resources, quality of living and infrastructure.
“A handful of states have made business-friendly policies a priority,” says J.P. Donlon, Editor-in-Chief of Chief Executive magazine and ChiefExecutive.net. “These forward-thinking states are the exception rather than the rule and include Utah, Arizona, Florida, Tennessee, Louisiana, Texas and Oklahoma.”
CEOs voted California as the worst state in 2011, with New York, Illinois, New Jersey and Michigan rounding out the bottom five.
“ABC — Anywhere But California,” said T.J. Rodgers, CEO of Cypress Semiconductor, a $668 million chip maker headquartered in San Jose, California, and with plants in 10 countries. “It’s expensive, it’s hostile to business, and environmental regulations are more of a drag on business than protecting the environment.” Cypress Semiconductor’s headcount in California peaked at 1,500. It’s now down to about 600.
With finances in shambles due to the weak economy, many states have been increasing tax rates.
“Today’s ‘soak the rich’ mentality hits business leaders especially hard,” says Marshall Cooper, CEO of Chief Executive magazine and ChiefExecutive.net. “CEOs and entrepreneurs vote with their feet — and also pack up jobs and investment with them when they leave.”
Best 5 States for Business Rank 2011 Rank 2010
Texas 1st 1st
North Carolina 2nd 2nd
Florida 3rd 6th
Tennessee 4th 3rd
Georgia 5th 7th
Worst 5 States for Business Rank 2011 Rank 2010
California 50th 50th
New York 49th 49th
Illinois 48th 45th
New Jersey 47th 47th
Michigan 46th 48th
Biggest Gainers Positions Gained
Biggest Losers Positions Lost
West Virginia -8
About Chief Executive
Chief Executive Group produces Chief Executive magazine (published since 1977), ChiefExecutive.net, and conferences and roundtables that enable top corporate officers to discuss key subjects and share their experiences within a community of peers. The Group also facilitates the annual “Chief Executive of the Year,” a prestigious honor bestowed upon an outstanding corporate leader, nominated and selected by a group of his or her peers.