Arizona ranks low in US News 'Best States' survey despite strong economic performance

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Posted at 9:05 AM, Mar 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-09 11:10:32-05

Arizona ranked first in the nation in job growth and seventh for its economy, but lagging scores in a number of other categories dropped it into the nation’s bottom rung in the 2021 US News Best States Rankings.

The report, released Tuesday, placed the Grand Canyon State at No. 39 overall among U.S. states, with low showings in education, opportunity, fiscal status and other categories outweighing positive performances in the economy and health care categories.

The placement is a five-point drop from Arizona’s previous spot at No. 34, returning the state to the place it held in the 2018 U.S. News report.

Washington took the top spot in the overall state rankings, with Minnesota, Utah, New Hampshire and Idaho rounding out the top five. Ranking at the bottom of the list were Mississippi (No. 48), Alabama (No. 49) and Louisiana (No. 50).

Job growth was where Arizona made its strongest showing, ranking first in the nation with an annual rate of 3.4%. The state placed fourth for overall economic growth and ranked at No. 13 for business environment and No. 27 for employment.

Read more from the Phoenix Business Journal.