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 Michigan’s Journey to “Top Ten”

 Michigan’s Journey to “Top Ten”
Thursday, Dec 22, 2016


For most of us, a journey wouldn’t be complete without a series of snapshots. It helps us review where we’ve been and plan for where we’ll go next. The same is true of MI’s economic journey. That’s why Business Leaders for Michigan shares an economic benchmarking report each year, so we can see how far we’ve come and plan for what’s next.

Our benchmarking shows that MI has succeeded in growing jobs and becoming more cost competitive since 2009. But progress raising income levels and GDP has been slower as most metrics that measure the value of locating in MI have mostly held steady over the same period. MI’s employment ranking has risen from 48th to 31st since 2009, but the state still ranks 33rd for personal incomes and 35th for per capita GDP.  MI’s growth has been slow relative to other states and some key measures of talent supply, infrastructure and economic development are actually declining.  Things are generally getting better, but not fast enough to become a Top Ten state at the rate we are progressing.

Our most significant challenges include low education attainment (29th), career and college readiness (36th), urban road conditions (40th) and economic development expenditures (30th). MI has also lost ground where its unfunded pension liability is concerned with a ranking of 28th – down from 16th in 2009.

The good news is that MI has made big gains in improving the corporate tax and overall business tax climate; and ranks highly on innovation factors, in cluding 10th in patents, 5th in university R&D and 6th in exports.

As we move into 2017, we invite you to take a look at MI’s economic voyage.  Our latest report on MI’s economic competitiveness can be informative as we start a new year, and chart our path toward being a Top Ten state.

Doug's esig
Doug Rothwell 
President & CEO

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