America's Top States For Business 2013

#21 Washington

Gary Corbett | Age Fotostock | Getty Images
2013 Rank
2012 Rank
Cost of Doing Business 121 44 37
Workforce 149 24 21
Quality of Life 218 10 15
Infrastructure & Transportation 181 31 36
Economy 220 24 45
Education 74 28 13
Technology & Innovation 248 4 5
Business Friendliness 109 23 36
Cost of Living 15 36 36
Access to Capital 22 7 3
Overall 1357 21 21


Governor: Jay Inslee (D)

Population: 6,897,012

GDP growth: 3.6 percent

Unemployment rate (May 2013): 6.8 percent

Top corporate rate: None, but has gross receipts tax

Top individual tax rate: None

Gasoline tax: 37.5 cents/gallon

Bond rating/outlook: Aa1/Negative (multiple)

Major private employers: Microsoft Corp., Sea-Tac International Airport, Providence Health & Services, Barrett Business Services, South Seattle Community College, Stewart Title Co., St. Joseph Medical Center, Batelle, Genie Industries, Mary Bridge Children's Hospital

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)

Top States For Business 2013

From the Governors


  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.