Southeast US

Competitive Alternatives 2016 includes business cost rankings for more than 100 cities in 10 countries. This page highlights the results for 18 cities in the Southeast US region.

Southeast US
Regional RankCityOverall
1Shreveport, LA91.7
2Baton Rouge, LA92.8
3Savannah, GA93.1
4New Orleans, LA93.1
5Little Rock, AR93.3
6Gulfport-Biloxi, MS93.3
7Jackson, MS93.3
8Montgomery, AL93.4
9Mobile, AL93.7
10Nashville, TN93.8
11Memphis, TN94.4
12Orlando, FL94.4
13Spartanburg, SC94.5
14Tampa, FL94.6
15Raleigh, NC95.1
16Atlanta, GA95.1
17Charlotte, NC95.2
18Miami, FL95.4
1  Business costs are expressed as an index. An index below 100 indicates lower costs than the US baseline. An index over 100 indicates higher costs than the US baseline. (e.g., an index of 95.0 represents costs 5.0% below the US baseline.) US Baseline is the average of the four largest US metro areas.

The southeast represents the lowest cost region in the United States and all cities in the region have business costs more than 4.5 percent below the US baseline. The range of variation in business costs among cities in this region (from lowest cost to highest cost) is also less than in other regions of the US.

Louisiana claims the title for the lowest cost US state, with three cities—Shreveport, Baton Rouge and New Orleans—ranking among the top four cities in this region. Only Savannah (Georgia) is able to match the Louisiana cities and make it into the top three. Little Rock (Arkansas) rounds out the top five low cost cities in this region.

The next six cities on the list all rank according to their states. Gulfport-Biloxi and Jackson (Mississippi) rank sixth and seventh, followed by Montgomery and Mobile (Alabama) and then Nashville and Memphis (Tennessee).

While business costs are higher in the remaining cities, costs in Orlando and Tampa are still very low for cities of their size. Among all US cities with populations in excess of two million, only Cincinnati (Ohio) offers lower business costs than these two large Florida cities. Atlanta, Charlotte and Miami are the highest cost cities in this region, but business costs in these cities are still low relative to large cities in other regions of the US.

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