How well run are America’s 50 states? The answer depends a lot on where you live.
For the second year, 24/7 Wall St. has reviewed data on financial health, standard of living and government services by state to determine how well each is managed. Based on this data, 24/7 Wall St. ranked the 50 from best to worst. The best-run is Wyoming. The worst-run is California.
Comparing the 50 states can be a challenge because they are so different. Some states have abundant natural resources while others rely on service or innovation. State populations also can be more rural or more urban. Some had booming industries that are waning or that have disappeared altogether. Border states with large immigrant communities have populations that are growing rapidly. Many states in the Northeast are not growing at all. All of these factors affect the finances and the living conditions in in each.
Despite these differences, states can do a great deal to control their fate. Well-run states have a great deal in common with well-run corporations. Books are kept balanced. Investment is prudent. Debt is sustainable. Innovation is prized. Workers are well-chosen and well-trained. Executives, including elected and appointed officials, are retained based on merit and not politics.