The second-to-last ranking was a slight improvement from both the 2012 and 2011 CNBC list, in which the Ocean State ranked dead last. This year Rhode Island outranked Hawaii.
The news source scored all 50 states on 51 measures of competitiveness and separated those metrics into 10 broad categories – cost of doing business, economy, infrastructure and transportation, workforce, quality of life, technology and innovation, business friendliness, education, cost of living, and access to capital.
The categories were weighted based on how frequently they were cited in state economic development marketing materials. “That way, our study ranks the states based on the criteria they use to sell themselves,” said the CNBC report.
Out of a possible 2,500 points, Rhode Island earned 983. Comparatively, South Dakota, which landed the top spot in the report, earned 1,639 points.
Calling the Ocean State a “a perennial loser” in the study, the CNBC report ranked Rhode Island near the bottom in economy (No. 40), infrastructure and transportation (No. 47) and business friendliness (No. 46).
In fact, Rhode Island ranked in the bottom 10 in every category except cost of doing business (No. 32), quality of life (No. 20) and access to capital (No. 23).
Rhode Island strong quality of life ranking was its saving grace on this year’s list, according to CNBC, which called the state’s overall performance “dismal.”
Neighboring Massachusetts earned the No. 16 spot.
On Tuesday, Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee submitted an article to CNBC citing the efforts the state legislature, the R.I. Economic Development Corporation and the Governor's Workforce Board, among others, are doing to help better the state's business standing.