When it comes to claiming the title of most-improved in CNBC's Top States for Business , it's usually a bit of a shouting match, because a few states can make a legitimate case.
Some states move up more spots than others. Some move fewer spots but finish higher in the rankings, usually breaking the top 10 or top five.
This year is no different. By one measure or another, North Dakota, Wyoming and Idahocan claim the honor of most improved in 2012 .
North Dakota jumped to five from 13; Wyomingto 10 from 21; and Idaho to 13 from 31. And talk about rivalries. South Dakotamoved to seven from 13. (Ties are possible.)
And as long as we're on the subject of honorable mention, addArkansas, which leapt to 20 from 33.
North Dakota's big move, and breakout year, was fueled by a variety of strong showings among our 10 categories : No. 2 in Economy, No. 4 in Business Friendliness, No. 5 in Quality of Life, No. 10 in Workforceand No. 15 in Infrastructure & Transportation.
Wyoming took the top spot in Economy — bumping North Dakota — while finishing ninth in Quality of Life, and tenth in Cost of Doing Business (vs. 34 in 2011).
Idaho moved up in Business Friendliness but not much else, suggesting that its overall ascension was as much a matter of other states' slippage.Page 1 of 2 | Next Page