Riding the rising tide of energy prices—and the job growth that goes with it—Texas claims the top spot in CNBC’s 2018 America’s Top States for Business rankings.
This is familiar territory for the Lone Star State, which becomes the first four-time winner in our annual study, now in its 12th year. But it has been a long time coming. This is the first time since 2012 that Texas has claimed top honors. Not coincidentally, West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil—the state’s most important export—peaked at just over $108 per barrel that year, a figure it has not seen since. But it has risen enough—around 60 percent in the last year, powering through the $70 per barrel mark in June—to turbocharge the $1.6 trillion Texas economy.
“The Texas economy remains in a broad-based expansion,” said Dallas Federal Reserve economists Christopher Slijk and Jason Saving in a recent report. “The state’s energy sector continues to boom, and areas of the state tied to oil and gas are growing at their strongest pace since 2014.”
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