America's Top States For Business 2013

#1 South Dakota

Mount Rushmore, South Dakota
RiverNorthPhotography | E+ | Getty Images
Mount Rushmore, South Dakota
2013 Rank
2012 Rank
Cost of Doing Business 394 1 3
Workforce 195 11 14
Quality of Life 224 7 7
Infrastructure & Transportation 203 19 27
Economy 273 6 12
Education 73 30 22
Technology & Innovation 70 48 46
Business Friendliness 176 2 1
Cost of Living 25 26 30
Access to Capital 6 39 48
Overall 1639 1 7


Governor: Dennis Daugaard (R)

Population: 833,354

GDP growth: 0.2 percent

Unemployment rate (May 2013): 4.0 percent

Top corporate rate: None

Top individual tax rate: None

Gasoline tax: 22 cents/gallon

Bond rating/outlook: No general obligation debt, but would be rated Aa2/Stable

Major private employers: IBP Hog Market Inc., Rapid City Regional Hospital, Sanford USD Medical Center, Citibank South Dakota NA, John Morrell & Co., Regional Health Physicians Inc., Avera, Larson Manufacturing Co., Tyson Fresh Meats, Walmart Supercenter

Economic profile sources: American Petroleum Institute (April 2013), Bureau of Economic Analysis (2012), Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2013 release), CareerOneStop, Moody's Investors Service (senior-most tax-backed ratings), National Governors Association, Tax Foundation (2013), U.S. Census Bureau (2012 estimate)

From the Governors


  • South Dakota, More Than Just Gorgeous Views

    South Dakota is the winner of the annual "America's Top States for Business" study. CNBC's Scott Cohn reports on the state's economy and its stunning views.

  • Ranking America's Workforces

    CNBC's Scott Cohn reveals how other states fared when it came to their workforce, including a look at education level, retraining programs and union membership.

  • Why South Dakota is Top State for Business

    The cost of doing business was one of the key reasons the Mount Rushmore State captured the top ranking as the best state for business, reports CNBC's Scott Cohn.