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Louisiana is the Least Independent State in America, Says Report

Ahead of Independence Day in just two short weeks, a ranking of the freest 50 in the United States was released on Tuesday (6.20). WalletHub conducted the survey, analyzing states on key criteria of reliance like the government, consumer finances, the job market, international trade, and personal vices. Louisiana ranked dead last in the study, indicating that the Boot is the least individualistic state in America. 


According to the findings, Louisiana ranked 46th on the list for financial dependency, which analyzes rates of poverty, debt per income, credit scores, and savings account balances. In a more in-depth indicator, Louisiana tied with South Carolina in third place for lowest median credit score, just behind Mississippi (in first), and Alabama and Georgia (both tied in second). 


Louisiana came in 37th place for government dependency, an indicator that reveals the state’s shortcoming in terms of households receiving public assistance, federal dependencies, and number of federal, state, and local government employees. 


The Boot came in 49th place for both vice dependency and reliance on the job market. With the job market, Louisiana ranked just above Alaska in the study, which examined rates of job growth, unemployment, underemployment, job creation, and industry variety. In a more in-depth metric, Louisiana ranked fourth for the highest unemployment rate, behind New Mexico (in first), Alaska, and Alabama. 


Perhaps in a state that the Big Easy calls home, it’s no surprise that Louisiana has high rates of vice dependency, ranking just above Kentucky in the study. This category considered rates of adult drug use, binge drinking, smoking, obesity, and smart device and social media usage. The state ranked in third place for highest percentage of adults with gambling disorders, just behind Mississippi (in first) and Minnesota. Rounding out the top five were Ohio and New Jersey. 


In terms of international trade, the Boot came in the third-to-last place above South Carolina (in last place) and Kentucky. Still, Louisiana ranked in fifth place for highest percentage of jobs supported by exported goods, behind Washington (in first), Alaska, North Dakota, and Texas. In an additional study, the state ranked in first for highest percentage of state GDP generated by exports to other countries. 


Check out WalletHub's graphic below to see where all the states rank. 

Source: WalletHub

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