North Carolina 6th in Nation, 13th in North America in Economic Freedom Report

by | Jan 1, 2024 | News

(The Center Square) – North Carolina is sixth in the nation in economic freedom, and 13th when including all Mexico states and Canadian provinces, according to an annual report.

Canada’s Fraser Institute used available data through 2021 to create its Economic Freedom of North America 2023 analysis. Each state and province in North America, from Mexico to Canada, is judged on economic freedom as measured by government spending, taxation and regulations. Authors Dean Stansel, José Torra and Ángel Carrión-Tavárez are based, respectively, in Dallas, Canada and Puerto Rico.

North Carolina’s score of 7.31 out of 10 is helped by labor market freedom (second nationally, 8.18 score). Government spending is 13th (7.1) and taxes are 18th (6.65). This U.S. dataset does not measure the impact of federal actions on economic freedom.

Including Mexico states and Canada provinces, North Carolina ranks 13th with a score of 7.99 out of 10. It scored second in labor market freedom (7.7), 11th in legal system and property rights (7.86), 22nd in government spending (7.6) and 24th in taxes (7.34). This dataset measures impact of all levels of government – federal, state, local – on economic freedom.

Overall in the U.S. dataset, New Hampshire was first, followed by Florida, Tennessee, Texas and South Dakota. No. 50 is New York, ahead of Vermont and California (tied 48th), Oregon (47th) and Hawaii (46th).

North Carolina was ninth a year earlier. From 12th in 2017, the climb up had been one spot a year. It was 22nd as recently as 2013, and its worst since the first 1981 ranking was 25th in each of 2003 and 2004. The previous best was eighth in 2008.

Fraser’s analysis contrasts to Freedom in the 50 States released in November by the Cato Institute. North Carolina ranked 24th in the country there. Fifteen years ago, it was No. 13. And since the turn of the century, it has never ranked so far from the top.

Syndicated with permission from The Center Square.

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