The Skinny blog is written by Rick Smith, editor and co-founder of WRAL Tech Wire and business editor of

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Cable business news network CNBC likes North Carolina, but not enough to rank the state at the top of its sixth annual “America’s Top States for Business.”

North Carolina finished fourth in the new survey, the results of which are being announced today.

Texas is the winner, CNBC declared late Tuesday afternoon.

Utah came in second.

Virginia is third.

North Carolina received 1,548 out of a possible 2,500 points across 10 categories. 

The ranking is down one spot from a year ago and is consistent with other recent surveys. The state rated third in similar best states for business by Chief Executive, Site Selection and Forbes magazines.

“In our sixth annual study, Texas racked up an impressive 1,604 points out of a possible 2,500, with top-10 finishes in six of our 10 categories of competitiveness,” CNBC noted. “Texas has never finished below second place since we began the study in 2007.”

North Carolina scored best (third) in caliber of its work force while cracking the top 10 in business friendliness (eighth) and technology and innovation (ninth)

The top three places will be disclosed through the rest of the day. North Dakota was announced earlier as No. 5.

Our state “fared well in several individual categories, such as Workforce, Transportation, and Technology,” CNBC says.

Rankings are based on 10 different categories of data but some of the criteria has been “tweaked,” CNBC says.

Here’s how North Carolina ranked by category, with data provided to WRAL News by CNBC:

Rank, category (score):

  • 4 OVERALL (1,548)
  • 21 Cost of Doing Business (206)
  • 3 Workforce (255)
  • 26 Quality of Life (196)
  • 31 Economy (132)
  • 11 Infrastructure & Transportation (205)
  • 9 Technology & Innovation (163)
  • 13 Education (140)
  • 8 Business Friendliness (152)
  • 18 Access to Capital (69)
  • 21 Cost of Living (30)

Categories and potential point totals as listed by CNBC:

  • Cost of Doing Business (350)
  • Workforce (350)
  • Quality of Life (350)
  • Infrastructure & Transportation (325)
  • Economy (325)
  • Education (225)
  • Technology & Innovation (225)
  • Business Friendliness (200)
  • Access to Capital (100)
  • Cost of Living (50)