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BUSINESS CLIMATE OVERVIEW
From the Texas Economic Development Guide 2017
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Texas Sets the Standard for Business Performance

Businesses that want to grow fast choose Texas.

BUSINESS CLIMATE OVERVIEW
by RON STARNER

Consider the evidence:

  • For the fifth year in a row, Site Selection magazine named Texas the winner of the Governor’s Cup award for securing more corporate facility investment projects than any other state in the nation. With 642 such deals in 2016, Texas topped second-place finisher Ohio by 127 projects.
  • Dallas-Fort Worth ranked second among all large metros in the US last year by landing 231 corporate facility projects, while Houston ranked third with 210. This marked the 10th year in a row that both DFW and Houston finished in the top five.
  • Austin was the second-best-performing metro in the nation by change in growth from 2010 to 2015, according to the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program. Houston ranked fifth, San Antonio eighth and DFW 11th.
  • El Paso ranked as the No. 1 best-performing metro by change in inclusion from 2010 to 2015, while Austin ranked No. 12.
  • Gallup ranked Austin as the fifth-best job creation market in the US last year.

These performance numbers do not occur in a vacuum. They happen because “the Texas business climate is among the best in the nation,” according to noted economist and Texas expert Dr. Ray Perryman of The Perryman Group in Waco. “Not only does the state have a large and growing quality workforce, but also a number of other benefits such as location, natural resources, available land, competitive cost of doing business, and notable incentives programs,” says Perryman, who has been called a “genius” by The Wall Street Journal and the “unofficial state economist” by The New York Times.

“The resilience of the Texas economy with the end of the oil surge has surprised many, and the state has been adding jobs at a decent rate even while our largest export sector (energy) was in the doldrums,” he notes. “Prospects for continued expansion are encouraging, and I am expecting expansion in Texas to outpace the nation over the next five years.”

Perryman
“Prospects for continued expansion are encouraging, and I am expecting expansion in Texas to outpace the nation over the next five years.”
— Dr. Ray Perryman, President and CEO, The Perryman Group

Perryman forecasts that real gross state product in Texas will grow from $1.5 trillion in 2016 to about $1.8 trillion in 2021, representing a 4.11 percent annual rate of expansion. “All major industry groups are projected to expand through 2021, with the services, mining, and wholesale and retail trade segments likely to experience the largest growth,” he says. Over that same time, the state will add about 1.4 million net new jobs, Perryman predicts.

Why such robust growth? “Texas’ biggest assets from a site selection perspective are the workforce and overall growth mentality with all that implies,” the economist says. “Many aspects of the state’s cost structure are lower than other states, including land prices. Texas compares fairly well by most tax measures, particularly from the perspective of individuals since there is no state income tax. For industries that rely on large numbers of knowledge workers, this factor can be a significant advantage.”

In fact, the Tax Foundation just issued a report showing that Texans enjoy the fifth-lowest overall state and local tax burden as a percentage of income in the US, at just 7.6 percent.

In short, the dollar stretches a lot farther in Texas, a state that does its best to get out of the way and let businesses do what they do best — make money.

 

Source: The Peryman Group (www.perryman Group.com)

Notes: Compound annual growth rates for real gross product from 2016 to 2021 for Metropolitan Statistical Areas.

Ron Starner
Executive Vice President of Conway, Inc.

Ron Starner

Ron Starner is Executive Vice President of Conway Inc. He has been with Conway for 16 years and serves as editor of the TrustBelt Report and lead organizer of the annual TrustBelt Conference. He also writes extensively for Site Selection and Conway's Custom Content Publishing Division. His Twitter handle is @RonStarner.

  



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