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1. North Dakota
> Debt per capita: $3,282 (22nd lowest)
> Budget deficit: None
> Unemployment: 3.5% (the lowest)
> Median household income: $51,704 (20th highest)
> Pct. below poverty line: 12.2% (13th lowest)
For the first time, North Dakota ranks as the best run state in the
country. In recent years, North Dakota’s oil boom has transformed its
economy. Last year, crude oil production rose 35%. As of August, 2012,
it was the second-largest oil producer in the country. This was due to
the use of hydraulic fracturing in the state’s Bakken shale formation.
The oil and gas boom brought jobs to North Dakota, which had the
nation’s lowest unemployment rate in 2011 at 3.5%, and economic growth.
Between 2010 and 2011, North Dakota’s GDP jumped 7.6%, by far the
largest increase in the nation. This growth has also increased home
values, which rose a nation-leading 29% between 2006 and 2011. North
Dakota and Montana are the only two states that have not reported a
budget shortfall since fiscal 2009.
For the record, Alaska ranks #6 on the list. Where does your state fall? Click here to find out.