While West Virginia ranks average in exports and government surplus, the lack of innovation potential and a high unemployment rate among other factors resulted in West Virginia’s low ranking in a recent WalletHub study.
The study gives each state a point total based on three categories: economic activity, economic health, and innovation potential. Within each category, there are sub-categories outlining specific criteria. Here is West Virginia’s ranking in some of the sub-categories:
18th in Government Surplus/Deficit per Capita
This year, Governor Jim Justice reports a huge government surplus partially as a result of tax raises for coal, natural gas, and sales.
19th in GDP Growth
Gross domestic product is a standard way to measure economic activity by calculating the value of goods and services produced in the state. West Virginia ranks about average, according to the Wallet Hub study. West Virginia’s GDP has been generally trending upward since 2010, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic Analysis.
50th in Unemployment Rate
Although the state has the second highest unemployment rate, the rate is better than previous years. West Virginia’s current unemployment rate is 5.1%, but the rate has been trending down since 2011, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
51st in Startup Activity
WalletHub said that they weighted this metric based on the Kauffman Index of Startup Activity, which bases its index on the rate of new entrepreneurs, whether those entrepreneurs are driven primarily by opportunity or necessity, and the number of new employer businesses.
51st in Percent of Jobs in High Tech Industries
Here are the 10 states with the worst economy, according to the study:
- West Virginia
- Rhode Island
Here are the 10 states with the best economy, according to the study:
- District of Columbia
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina