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The Best-Run and Worst-Run States

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3rd Best-Run State: Iowa

Debt per capita: $2,478 (15th lowest)

Budget deficit: 2.5% (41st largest)

Unemployment: 5.2% (tied-5th lowest)

Median household income: $50,957 (23rd highest)

Pct. below poverty line: 12.7% (14th lowest)

Agriculture and related industries accounted for 6.7% of Iowa’s GDP last year, six times the national rate. Like many well-run states, it has a perfect credit rating from both Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s. Additionally, while home values across the nation fell by more than 10% between 2007 and 2012, in Iowa they increased considerably—by 7.1%—over that time. Also, Iowa’s unemployment rate and underemployment rate—which includes the unemployed, discouraged workers, and those who work but want to work more—were both among the lowest in the nation last year, at 5.2% and 10%, respectively. Iowa’s budget shortfall in fiscal 2012 was under 3%, one of the smallest budget gaps in the country.

(Photo: iStock)

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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