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Arizona ranks as the sixth best state in the U.S. for business, up four spots from last year, according to Chief Executive Magazine’s annual survey of CEOs.
The publication asked 736 CEOs nationwide about their feelings on state business and economic climates.
Executives in the survey noted the number of California companies looking at moving to Arizona and business tax reductions that are going into effect in the Grand Canyon State. California ranked last on the business climate list. New York was 49th, Illinois 48th and Massachusetts 47th. Golden State voters approved income tax increases on the wealthy in November that have prompted some business executives and wealthy investors to look at relocating.
Texas ranks No. 1 on the best states for business list. It has held the top spot for nine consecutive years. Texas has no personal income taxes and has a gross receipts tax instead of traditional corporate income tax. The Lone Star State is home an ample number of Fortune 500 companies and has been a strong IPO market.
Florida, which also does not have personal income taxes, was second, followed by North Carolina, Tennessee, Indiana and then Arizona.
Indiana adopted right-to-work rules in 2012 that businesses like because they make it harder for unions to organize.
Ironically, the four states with the lowest rankings — California, New York, Illinois and Massachusetts — are home to scores of corporate headquarters, banks, technology companies and research and development activity.
Among Arizona’s other Western neighbors, Nevada came in ninth, Utah 12th, Colorado 13th and New Mexico 32nd.