Gary D's Take

A Different Recession in Alabama

A Different Recession in Alabama

Aug 22, 2012

In 2007 there were eight Fortune 500 companies headquartered in Alabama. Today there is only one. Texas whose economy is rebounding at a faster rate than any other state has fifty one Fortune 500 companies that make their home there.

What happened to Alabama ? Other states that have seen an exodus of large corporations include Michigan and Maryland.  Michigan’s reason is pretty obvious but what about Maryland? By all accounts Maryland’s problem is the recent rise in tax rates. Big companies are sensitive to a lot of factors but  operating costs are high on the list. So did Maryland kill the “goose that laid the golden egg”? It certainly looks like it.

It doesn’t take an economics degree to realize the prosperity fallout associated with having a “500”  company headquartered in your state. Big companies tend to buy the things they need locally and large companies need lots of stuff. Remember this conversation , “Why is ABC Company buying so many widgets?” answer, “Oh they supply X to (insert name of Fortune 500 company here).”

So what’s the fix for Alabama’s “Fortune” deficit? I certainly don’t have that answer but I do know that if we don’t do some thing, Alabama’s comeback trail will be hard , long and treacherous.

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