Chief Executive magazine recently revealed that CEOs nationwide rank Louisiana number 11 in the U.S., the state’s highest position ever, in the magazine’s annual ranking of Best & Worst States for Business.
The report continues the state’s ascent in national business climate rankings, with Louisiana showing the greatest improvement of any state in the U.S. over the past four years. Since 2009, Louisiana has improved a nation-best 33 spots in the Chief Executive survey.
Gov. Bobby Jindal said, “Since we took office in 2008, we've worked tirelessly to create a business environment where companies want to invest and create jobs for our people. We've reined in government spending; eliminated job-killing taxes on businesses; created customized workforce training programs; overhauled our governmental ethics laws; and passed game-changing legislation to give every child in Louisiana an opportunity for a great education that prepares them for jobs in the 21st century workforce. Thanks to these and other reforms, leading companies like Benteler, CenturyLink, Sasol, IBM, Oceaneering, GE Capital, Halliburton, Gardner Denver, EA, Lockheed Martin, Procter & Gamble, and others are choosing to invest and create thousands of new jobs in our state.
“With all of the progress that we’ve made and all that is poised to happen in our economy over the next few years, the last thing we should be doing is raising taxes on businesses and families in our state. Let’s stay the course. Let’s continue to work together to build a brighter economic future for our state and our children. We want to keep the job numbers up and the unemployment rate down. We want to keep GDP and per capita income on the upswing. Most importantly, we want to keep our sons and daughters right here at home so they can welcome new neighbors from other states in search of great opportunity. To do so, we must continue holding the line on taxes.”
Chief Executive Editor-in-Chief J.P. Donlon, who last year described Louisiana as “the Cinderella of business improvement,” writes in 2013 that, “Louisiana has come a long way since 2006 when it ranked 47th.”
Louisiana’s status as the most improved state for business in Chief Executive follows a series of ranking gains that have vaulted the state substantially higher since 2008 on every national ranking of state business climates, for example:
- Site Selection magazine ranked Louisiana’s business climate No. 7 in the U.S. in its November 2012 issue, Louisiana’s highest-ever ranking.
- Area Development magazine ranked Louisiana No. 6 among the Top States for Doing Business in 2012, Louisiana’s highest-ever ranking.
- Business Facilities named LED FastStart® the nation’s best state workforce training program in 2010, 2011 and 2012, describing the Louisiana program as “the gold standard for workforce training solutions.” The magazine ranked Louisiana No. 5 for Best Business Climate in its 2012 Rankings Report, also Louisiana’s highest-ever ranking.
- Pollina Corporate Real Estate, which named Louisiana the nation’s most-improved state in 2010, ranked Louisiana No. 16 among the top pro-business states in the U.S. for 2012, Louisiana’s highest-ever ranking. Since 2008, Louisiana has improved 24 spots in the Pollina report, more than any other state.
- Site Selection has ranked LED one of the top 10 best performing state economic development agencies in the country for the last four years in a row.
- Southern Business & Development magazine reported that Louisiana secured more significant business development projects per capita than any other state in the South for the last four years in a row.
Louisiana now ranks higher in every major national business climate ranking than it ever did prior to 2008.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Louisiana is one of only 11 states in the U.S. (plus Washington, D.C.) with more jobs today than in January 2008. In fact, Louisiana has produced the sixth fastest private-sector job growth in the U.S. (second fastest in the South) since January 2008. Additionally, Louisiana’s unemployment rate has remained well below that of the South and U.S. every month since January 2008.
According to the U.S. Census, Louisiana’s population has grown about 23 percent faster than the U.S. over the last five-year period, and the state has experienced five years in a row of net population in-migration. During the last four years, over 20,000 more people moved into Louisiana from Texas, Mississippi and other states than moved out of Louisiana to other U.S. states. This is in stark contrast to the 15-year period from 1990 to 2005, when Louisiana experienced net domestic outmigration of more than 7,500 people every single year.