To access the Index interactive map of the United States featuring highlights of all state results, please click here. To access the full Index report, please click here.
SBE Council chief economist Raymond J. Keating, author of the study, noted: "The November elections were historic in terms of what happened in congressional elections, but there were also significant changes at the state level. Not only did Republicans pick up governor seats, but they also made huge gains in state legislative houses. So, while there are expectations for policy changes at the federal level, there should be new policy paths carved out at the state level as well. The 'Small Business Survival Index 2010' shows which states are most in need of improving their competitiveness, and what particular policy areas need changes so entrepreneurs and investors can get the economy and job creation back on track."
Keating continued: "Policy matters. Unfortunately, the policies implemented often work against small businesses, despite the nice talk nearly all politicians serve up about small business. The National Conference of State Legislatures reported earlier this year that state legislatures have increased taxes and fees for the ninth consecutive year as they worked to shore up state budgets. Unfortunately, tax increases, along with new and expanded regulation, do anything but shore up a state's competitiveness. Instead, they undercut entrepreneurs and investors, and therefore work against economic and employment growth. Establishing a pro-entrepreneur, pro-investment policy climate is critical to a healthy economy and to sound government budgeting."
The "Small Business Survival Index" is the most comprehensive measure of which states are truly friendly to small business, and which are not in terms of public policy decisions. The factors included in the Index - taxes, various regulatory costs, government spending, property rights, health care policies, energy costs, and much more - matter a great deal to the competitiveness of each state and to the well being of small business.
The 2010 Index has been expanded to cover 38 major government-imposed or government-related costs affecting small businesses and entrepreneurs. The measures are added together for an overall rating.
The Top 10 states are: 1) South Dakota, 2) Nevada, 3) Texas, 4) Wyoming, 5) Washington, 6) Florida, 7) Alabama, 8) South Carolina, 9) Ohio, and 10) Colorado. Meanwhile, the unfortunate Bottom 10 are: 42) Minnesota, 43) Massachusetts, 44) Hawaii, 45) Rhode Island, 46) Maine, 47) Vermont, 48) California, 49) New York, 50) New Jersey, and 51) District of Columbia.