America's Top States for Business 2007

CNBC: America's Top States For Business -- Editor's Introduction

Why do some states attract more business than others? How do they do it? And how does your state stack up? CNBC, America's Business Channel, looks at the best states for business--and the worst--in our exclusive study.

To arrive at America's Top States for Business, Coordinating Producer Courtney Ford and I scored all 50 states--using publicly available data--on 40 different measures of competitiveness. States received points based on their rankings in each metric. Then, we separated those metrics into ten broad categories. 

So what makes a state great for business? Here are our ten categoriesand the maximum possible points for each:

We weighted the categories based on how frequently each is cited in state economic development marketing materials (We figure the states have a pretty good idea of what the businesses they court are looking for). So, for example, a strong showing in the Cost of Doing Business category--worth 450 out of a total of 2021 points--is much more important to a state's overall score than Access to Capital, which is worth 50points. (For complete criteria, click here.) We chose our categories with input from business groups including the National Association of Manufacturers

Starting Monday, July 9, we're revealing the top five states in our study on "Power Lunch"at 1215p ET, counting down to the winner on Friday, July 13. We'll also be providing hints each day as to the identify of those states.

The complete rankings of our study and how each of the fifty states performed in the ten various categories will be revealed along with the winning state on July 13. (Good luck!) 

In the meantime, check out our snapshots of all 50 states and give us your opinion on why your state is good for business.