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GO-Biz News Brief (March 12, 2015)

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GO-Biz News Brief
March 12, 2015

(Bloomberg View) Best State for Business? Yes, California
There are plenty of reasons to presume that California must be a bad place to do business. Why then does the market, where buyers and sellers determine relative value, show otherwise? California-based companies surpass their competitors in the U.S. by most measures of performance favored by investors. California companies in the S&P 500 delivered returns of 134 percent; the closest big-state challenger was Florida, whose S&P companies had an 82 percent return, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Companies domiciled in California also outperformed the S&P 500 during the past four years by a margin of 23 percent.

(Central Valley Business Times) California exports outpace nation
Despite labor strife that stymied trade through West Coast seaports in January, California’s export trade actually fared better than the nation as a whole that month, according to an analysis by Beacon Economics. California’s merchandise export trade in January totaled $12.67 billion. “While that represented a nominal 1.6 % decline from the $12.87 billion recorded in January 2014, overall U.S. merchandise exports fell 4.7% over the same period,” the Beacon report says.

(North Bay Business Journal) California powering ahead in global economic race
California leads U.S. states in agriculture, technology and manufacturing revenue growth, Bloomberg data show. It’s home to more companies on the S&P 500 than any other state. The state’s job growth outpaced the nation in the first nine months of 2014. Look out U.K, France and Germany — with the economic problems in the European Union, California may pass you this year!

(SF Gate) California claims 20 of Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For”
Google is still the best company to work for, according to Fortune. The Mountain View-based tech giant earned the top spot for the sixth year in a row. California had the strongest showing of any state on the list, claiming 20 spots. California’s Twitter and Riot Games debuted on the list for the first time this year.

(The Californian) Poll finds voters are still California Dreamin’
Is the curtain falling on the California Dream? Not by a long shot, according to the people living it. When pollsters asked California voters whether they would rather live here or somewhere else, more than seven in 10 picked California. Asked whether the state’s upside outweighed its problems, they said yes, and by a lot. The percentage of people saying California is on the right track is three times what it was when Gov. Jerry Brown was elected in 2010.

(LA Times) 131 Californians make Forbes’ billionaire list
According to Forbes, which released its 2015 billionaires list Monday, there are now a record 1,826 billionaires worldwide, worth a combined $7.05 trillion. California is home to 131 of them. Indeed, the state’s tech hub in Silicon Valley helped the Golden State dominate the list. California has 131 billionaires, greater than nearly all countries, according to Forbes.

(LA Times) Op- Ed: Renewable energy is a California success story
The early predictions of California’s economic calamity have proved to be misinformed. Unemployment in the state has fallen from 12% in 2011 to 6.9% today. The U.S. solar industry’s job growth increased 86% in the last five years and employs 174,000 Americans. More than 75,000 Americans work in the wind power industry. In California, more work in the solar energy industry than in all the state’s investor-owned utilities combined.

About GO-Biz

GO-Biz serves as California’s office for economic development and offers a range of services to business owners. Those services include attraction, retention and expansion services, site selection, permit streamlining, clearing of regulatory hurdles, small business assistance, international trade development, assistance with state government, important informational briefings and much more. For more information visit: www.business.ca.gov.