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OAKLAND, CA-A recent survey of corporate executives by the Development Counsellors International reveals that California is perceived to be the least favorable of business climates among U.S. states.

At the Annual International Economic Development Council Annual Conference in Oakland yesterday, members of DCI presented their findings of a recent survey of how corporate executives perceive different regions and states for investment.

According to DCI, the survey asked almost 250 corporate executives with site location responsibilities to measure trends in the most effective strategies and techniques in economic development marketing. The study was first conducted in 1995 and again in 1999. The 2002 survey is a follow-up study to determine changes in the perspectives of these corporate executives.

The 2002 survey revealed that negative perception of California’s business climate increased significantly among executives. In 1999, approximately 25% of all respondents said that California had a least favorable business climate. That number was raised to 57% in this year’s survey. Overall, California ranked at the nation’s least favorable business climate, followed by New York and Massachusetts.

The survey also revealed a strong shift away from regional sales and service facilities as a preferred candidate for companies’ expansions or relocations. The most likely candidate for a corporate move or location is manufacturing and production plants, according to respondents. Corporation, division or regional headquarters, distribution centers, and finally, sales or service facilities follow this choice.

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