Louisiana has perennially been listed at the bottom of many significant national rankings, but in 2008, there were some good numbers to report, according to Louisiana Economic Development’s report of selected economic highlights for 2008. Besides the Better Government Association boosting the state to No. 5 on its Integrity Index, Louisiana also moved up on the following lists:
:: No. 22 on Top State Business Climate Rankings in Site Selection magazine;
:: No. 17 on Forbes magazine’s growth-prospects ranking;
:: No. 43 [up from No. 47] in CNBC’s Top States for Business;
:: No. 41 [up from No. 44] in the 2008 Information Technology & Innovation Foundation’s New Economy Index.
For the first time, U.S. News & World Report ranked LSU in the top tier of its America’s Best Colleges list, and Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch upgraded the state’s bond ratings. Manpower Inc. also ranked two corridor regions—Lafayette and New Orleans—in the Top 10 nationally for hiring projections in early 2009. Industrial Info Resources also ranked Louisiana second behind only Texas for the number of significant industrial projects expected to begin in 2009.