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Indiana cracks Forbes Top 10 states for business for second Times

The Indiana State Capitol in Indianapolis.

Jonathan Miano, The Times

Indiana returned to the Forbes Best States for Business for the second time, the first time since Mitch Daniels was governor.

Forbes Magazine ranked the Hoosier State the 10th Best State for Business, after North Carolina, Texas, Utah, Nebraska, Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Colorado, and North Dakota. Indiana ranked first nationally for having the most lax government regulations and fourth in quality of life.

"Indiana cracked the top 10 this year for only the second time in Forbes' annual Best States for Business," the magazine said in its rankings. "In 2012, the state made news after becoming the 23rd right-to-work state in the U.S. Indiana ranked first in the regulatory component of the Mercatus Center's, 'Freedom in the 50 States,' and it sports a AAA rating from Moody's on its general obligation debt. Another plus: the cost of living is fifth lowest in the U.S. at 9 percent below the national average."

Forbes ranked Indiana 12th nationally in labor costs, estimated to be 8 percent below the national average, as well 18th in growth prospects, 23rd in economic climate and 45th in labor supply.

In 2016, about 1,100 more people moved out of the state of about 6.6 million residents than moved in, Forbes estimates. Jobs grew by 1.2 percent this year, the median household income was $49,255 and the state had a 24.9 percent college attainment rate.

Neighboring Illinois placed 37th among the Best States for Business, according to Forbes Magazine.

The Land of Lincoln was ranked 15th in quality of life, 28th in economic climate, 30th in business costs, 35 in growth prospects, 26 in labor supply and 40th in regulatory environment.


Business reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.