Louisiana

#50 in Overall RankingsNo change in rank from 2018
Credit

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Overview of Louisiana

Area
52,378 SQ. MI.
GDP
$235.96 Billion
College Educated
30%
Population
4,684,333
Capital
Baton Rouge
Median Income
$25,885
Area
52,378 SQ. MI.
GDP
$235.96 Billion
College Educated
30%
Population
4,684,333
Capital
Baton Rouge
Median Income
$25,885
Rankings Scorecard
  • #45
    Health Care
  • #48
    Education
  • #49
    Economy
  • #48
    Infrastructure
  • #50
    Opportunity
  • #43
    Fiscal Stability
  • #50
    Crime & Corrections
  • #50
    Natural Environment

Louisiana was named in honor of King Louis XIV. The French sold the region to President Thomas Jefferson in 1803. The Louisiana Purchase, 828,000 square miles that cost less than 3 cents per acre, doubled the size of the country.

The Pelican State was the first to be carved from the territory in 1812, becoming the 18th to join the union, nine years after the historic Louisiana Purchase was made.

By 1840, New Orleans had the biggest slave market in the U.S., and though the state also had one of the largest freed black presences in the country, almost half of the state’s population was enslaved in 1860. Louisiana became the sixth state to secede from the Union in 1861.

Resistance to racial equality reigned in Louisiana after the Civil War. The U.S. Supreme Court doctrine of racial segregation with “separate but equal” facilities came from a case brought in the state, and while the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson ruling eventually was overturned by a series of other cases – including the landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision – it emboldened segregationists during an era of segregated schools and lunch counters.

Activism and leadership in the 1960s brought national attention to African-American disenfranchisement and helped pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The state has long been vulnerable to Atlantic Ocean hurricanes that barrel into the Gulf of Mexico. In 2005, Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and other low regions of the Gulf Coast, causing large-scale damage and flooding in one of the worst natural disasters in U.S. history.

Bordered by Arkansas, Texas and Mississippi, Louisiana boasts of the colonial-era French Quarter and infamous Mardi Gras festival in New Orleans, birthplace of American jazz.

Louisiana Rankings

Overall Rankings
CategoryRank
No change in rank from 2018
#50
Read our methodology to see how the scores and rankings were calculated.
Rankings
Health Care#45
Education#48
Economy#49
Infrastructure#48
Opportunity#50
Fiscal Stability#43
Crime & Corrections#50
Natural Environment#50
Overall Rankings
No change in rank from 2018
#50
Read our methodology to see how the scores and rankings were calculated.
CategoryRank
Rankings
Health Care#45
Education#48
Economy#49
Infrastructure#48
Opportunity#50
Fiscal Stability#43
Crime & Corrections#50
Natural Environment#50
Ranking
Atributes
#45
Rankings
Health Care Access#27
Health Care Quality#40
Public Health#44
Ranking
#45
Atributes
Rankings
Health Care Access#27
Health Care Quality#40
Public Health#44
12.6%

Adults Uninsured

National Average: 13.8%

6,343
/100k patients

Preventable Hospital Admissions

National Average: 4,603

36.2%

Obesity Rate

National Average: 31.3%

Ranking
Atributes
#48
Rankings
Higher Education#49
Pre-K - 12#46
Ranking
#48
Atributes
Rankings
Higher Education#49
Pre-K - 12#46
$27,210

Debt at Graduation

National Average: $28,650

78.6%

High School Graduation Rate

National Average: 84.1%

267

NAEP Math Scores

National Average: 283

Ranking
Atributes
#49
Rankings
Business Environment#48
Employment#48
Growth#49
Ranking
#49
Atributes
Rankings
Business Environment#48
Employment#48
Growth#49
$0.783
Per $1K GDP

Venture Capital

National Average: $6.77

-0.2%

Job Growth

National Average: 1.2%

-0.2%

Net Migration

National Average: 0.3%

Ranking
Atributes
#48
Rankings
Energy#40
Internet Access#48
Transportation#45
Ranking
#48
Atributes
Rankings
Energy#40
Internet Access#48
Transportation#45
4.0%

Renewable Energy Usage

National Average: 10.0%

25.3
minutes

Average Commute Time

National Average: 26.9

15.5%

Roads in Poor Condition

National Average: 23.5%

Ranking
Atributes
#50
Rankings
Affordability#20
Economic Opportunity#50
Equality#47
Ranking
#50
Atributes
Rankings
Affordability#20
Economic Opportunity#50
Equality#47
93.6

Cost of Living Index

National Average: 100.0

$46,145

Household Income

National Average: $60,336

19.7%

Poverty Rate

National Average: 13.4%

Ranking
Atributes
#43
Rankings
Long-Term Fiscal Stability#39
Short-Term Fiscal Stability#43
Ranking
#43
Atributes
Rankings
Long-Term Fiscal Stability#39
Short-Term Fiscal Stability#43
AA3-STABLE

Government Credit Rating Score

National Average: N/A

0.96

Budget Balancing

National Average: 1.01

2.5

Liquidity

National Average: 2.5

Ranking
Atributes
#50
Rankings
Corrections#49
Public Safety#48
Ranking
#50
Atributes
Rankings
Corrections#49
Public Safety#48
760
/100k residents

Incarceration Rate

National Average: 450

130
/100k juveniles

Juvenile Incarceration

National Average: 100

557
/100k residents

Violent Crime Rate

National Average: 394

Ranking
Atributes
#50
Rankings
Air and Water Quality#31
Pollution#50
Ranking
#50
Atributes
Rankings
Air and Water Quality#31
Pollution#50
253

Days with Unhealthy Air Quality

National Average: 227

3.00
/100k residents

Drinking Water Violation Points

National Average: 2.40

3,331
pounds/mi2

Industrial Toxins

National Average: 1,015

Photos From California to New York: All 50 U.S. States Excel at Something

Workers bagging ears of corn from a giant stack of corn at a farmers' market in downtown Dubuque.    Part of the USN&WR series on the changing political map.  In this case

Best States Methodology

The overall Best State ranking from U.S. News & World Report shows how each of the 50 U.S. states ranks in 71 metrics across eight categories.

Rankings Scorecard
  • #45
    Health Care
  • #48
    Education
  • #49
    Economy
  • #48
    Infrastructure
  • #50
    Opportunity
  • #43
    Fiscal Stability
  • #50
    Crime & Corrections
  • #50
    Natural Environment

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Best States is an interactive platform developed by U.S. News for ranking the 50 U.S. states, alongside news analysis and daily reporting. The platform is designed to engage citizens and government leaders in a discussion about what needs improvement across the country.