Two Midwestern cities within 120 miles of one another rank in the nation’s top ten on the new Forbes Magazine list of “Best Places for Business and Careers.” Omaha ranks number-seven while Des Moines is right behind at number-eight. Forbes senior editor Kurt Badenhausen (bad’-in-houz-in) says the categories are different in this year’s rankings. He says in past years, the list focused on job growth, income growth and a city’s high-tech capacity. Badenhausen says they still look at job and income growth, but they added factors like the cost of doing business, crime rates, housing prices, net migration and the supply of educated labor. He says it’d be comparing apples to oranges to compare how Omaha and Des Moines did on this survey versus last year, since the criteria have changed. Last year, Omaha ranked number-89 while Des Moines squeaked in at the very bottom — number-160.Badenhausen says both cities have many similarities in categories including: very low costs of doing businesses, labor, taxes, energy and office space. Omaha is the 2nd lowest in the nation while Des Moines ranks 12th in the U-S for its cost of doing business.He says both cities have seen very strong income growth and both have very affordable housing and a highly educated labor supply. The full top-ten list runs: at number-one, Austin, Texas; Boise, Idaho; Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina; Atlanta, Georgia; Madison, Wisconsin; Provo, Utah; Omaha; Des Moines; Dallas, Texas; and Washington D-C. The full list can be viewed at “www.forbes.com/bestplaces”.
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