SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Texas remains the top state for business and California still holds the title for the worst, according to an annual ranking of states by Chief Executive magazine released on Wednesday.
Chief Executive each year surveys CEOs and asks them to grade states in which they do business. This year 650 responded, giving Texas high marks "foremost for its business-friendly tax and regulatory environment," a report on the survey and ranking said on the magazine's website.
"Texas easily clinched the No. 1 rank, the eighth successive time it has done so," the report said. "California earns the dubious honor of being ranked dead last for the eighth consecutive year."
California "appears to slip deeper into the ninth circle of business hell," the report said. "Each year, the evidence that businesses are leaving California or avoid locating there because of the high cost of doing business due to excessive state taxes and stringent regulations, grows."
New York was ranked just ahead of California.
New York's unemployment rate stood at 8.5 percent in March, compared with California's 11.0 percent jobless rate that month, which was the third highest state unemployment rate, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Texas posted a jobless rate of 7.0 percent that month, compared with a national average of 8.2 percent.
Chief Executive's report may be found at http://chiefexecutive.net/best-worst-states-for-business-2012
(Reporting By Jim Christie; Editing by Richard Chang)