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24/7 Wall St.: The Best- and Worst-Run States in America

Best-Run States

4. Utah
Debt per capita: $2,356 (15th lowest)
Budget deficit: 14.7% (25th largest)
Unemployment: 6.7% (tied-11th lowest)
Median household income: $55,869 (14th highest)
Pct. below poverty line: 13.5% (tied-17th lowest)

In fiscal 2011, Utah had a budget deficit of $700 million, equal to 14.7% of the state’s GDP. This debt-to-GDP ratio is worse than half the states in the U.S. Despite these problems, Utah has committed to reducing expenses in place of raising taxes or increasing debt. The state has also limited its borrowing. Its total debt was just under $6.5 billion in fiscal 2010, or $2,356 per capita — less than most states — and 40.4% of 2010 tax revenue. Both Moody’s and S&P gave Utah their highest credit ratings because of the state’s strong fiscal management. Moody’s commented that Utah has a “tradition of conservative fiscal management; rebuilding of budgetary reserves after their use in the recession; [and] a closely managed debt portfolio.”

(AP Photo/ George Frey)

More From 24/7 Wall St.:
Interactive Tool of All 50 States
States with the Most Unemployment Insurance Losses
The 12 Companies Paying Americans the Least



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

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