No surprise here: Texas is No. 1 once again in CNBC's list of America's Top States for Business for 2012.
It's the third time that Texas has nabbed the top spot since CNBC started the ranking in 2007, with previous wins in 2008 and 2010, and it has never been ranked lower than No. 2. CNBC's top states rankings are derived from 43 criteria that are grouped into 10 broad categories and weighted by relative importance.
The Lone Star State was buoyed over No. 2 Utah and last year's top state, now No. 3 Virginia, on the strength of a top ranking in infrastructure and transportation and top 10 scores in cost of living (No. 3), access to capital (No. 8), technology and innovation (No. 2), economy (No. 5) and workforce (No. 7), with most of those rankings showing marked improvement over 2011.
There were three metrics in which Texas ranked in the bottom half of states: Quality of life (No. 35), education (No. 26) and cost of doing business (No. 28). According to CNBC's Scott Cohn, the low quality of life score was due in part to factors like access to health care, since a quarter of Texans lack health insurance.