Grading Places: What Do the Business Climate Rankings Really Tell Us?

May 2013

By Peter Fisher of the Iowa Policy Project with a Preface by Greg LeRoy

Prominent studies that purport to measure and rank the states’ “business climates” are actually politicized grab-bags of data. They contradict each other wildly, have no predictive value, and should not be used to inform public policies. This is only the third such analysis of pseudo-social science “business climatology” in 27 years.