Economic Facts About Idaho

Author: Jason Coles

Updated On:

Updated On:

Idaho may not be the first place that springs to mind when you think of economic strength and a booming business climate, however, this is the reality of what is happening in the state!

The Gem State has one of the most stable economies and business climates in the entire nation, with thousands of entrepreneurs thriving within the state, and contributing to the United States’ enormous economic engine.

Businesses both small, large, and everything in between are taken incredibly seriously by the Idaho Secretary of State and the Idaho Department of Commerce. The pair provide a wide range of incentives, grant programs, access to loans, and State Tax Incentives to small and medium-sized businesses.

So, is Idaho a good place for business? The answer is a resounding YES!

Idaho is a very business-friendly state, not just because it offers a variety of business programs such as Idaho small business development centers, the Idaho tax reimbursement incentive, the Idaho opportunity fund, and the data center sales tax exemption to name just a few, but the state also has low taxes, costs, a strong labor market, and access to big neighboring state consumer markets.

So, if you decide to register a business in Idaho, you can benefit from all of this and much more.

Entrepreneurs from Idaho have produced some awesome businesses over the years, and with the state’s recent surge in popularity, you can expect a lot more!

Economic facts about Idaho

Idaho-based companies enjoy comparatively low corporate income taxes, with the addition of low personal income tax rates, which make the state, even more, business-friendly.

The state is also a haven for small businesses, with over 99% of the total Idaho businesses being small businesses. Many other states rely heavily on large businesses (500 or more employees) for economic funding, however, this is not the case with Idaho as more and more small businesses are starting up each year.

Additional Economic Facts about Idaho

  • Idaho’s GDP is over $80 billion – the 41st largest in the U.S., but when you look at the population of the state, it’s still an impressive amount.
  • The state’s GDP growth rate between 2014-2019 was 3.4%.
  • Idaho’s GDP per capita was just over $40,000 in 2019.
  • Idaho has a low and progressive income tax rate that ranges between 1.125% – 6.925%.
  • The base sales tax rate in Idaho is 6%.
  • Idaho ranks 3rd for the best state economy (US News & World Report).
  • Idaho’s economic growth has been incredible over the past several years, and this has been highlighted by the US News and World Report ranking the state 1st out of all 50 states for this metric.
  • Idaho’s minimum wage rate is $7.25 per hour.
  • Job growth in Idaho is up to 3%, the national average is 1.4%.
  • Wallethub has ranked Idaho’s economic health 2nd in the nation.
  • Wallethub has also ranked Idaho’s economic activity 13th in the U.S.
  • The average house price in Idaho is $315,911 according to Zillow.
  • The national average for net migration is 0.2%, Idaho’s net migration is 3%!
  • Idaho’s infrastructure is fantastic, and this is evident in the renewable energy usage, with the national average being 11.2% and Idaho’s being 32.3%.
  • The cost of living in Idaho is significantly less than the national average.
  • The state’s population growth over the last five years has been 1.8%.
  • The state’s public safety is much higher than the average, with the US News & World Report rating it the 3rd best out of all 50 states.
  • 39.4% of Idaho is college-educated.
  • Idaho ranks #11 out of all 50 states for Fiscal stability (US News & World Report).
  • There are 119 public airports in Idaho.
  • Idaho has an extremely active and outdoors lifestyle, which is made possible by the state’s consistent weather and awesome natural environment. People travel to Idaho from all over to ski or snowboard due to the state’s brilliant skiing mountains and undeniable reputation.
  • There are many famous events that take place in Idaho on an annual basis, with music festivals being the main attraction. Huge groups of passionate music and song lovers flock to the state each year to let their hair down and have some fun in the Gem State, which, results in more economic stability and success. Well-known festivals are the Mountain Home music festival, Tree Fort music festival, and Boise music festival.
  • Idaho’s economy is fast developing at a rapid rate, due to the state’s quick response to investors, and lesser business regulations for new startups. Scheduling a meeting with the correct authorities is relatively easy, and makes running your business as smooth as possible.
  • Due to the state being vast and sparsely populated, there is a lot of land availability, which can be used for warehouses, offices, and other real estates, at low costs.
  • Trade is huge in Idaho, which is aided by the positioning of the state, boarding large consumer markets such as  Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, and Canada.
  • Idaho boasts the cheapest gas and electricity utility costs in the United States!
  • Idaho is consistently placed as a top state for patents per capita demonstrating great innovation in the state.
  • Idaho is currently the leading state in economic momentum, creditworthiness, and growth in personal income!
  • 28% of Idaho’s total economic output is generated by the food processing industry.
  • 13% of the state’s GDP is made up of the agriculture and food processing industry.
  • Idaho has the 3rd highest projected job growth rate in the nation.
  • Idaho also has the 2nd lowest property tax rate in the country.
  • Thumbtack has established Idaho as having the most friendly small business environment in the United States.

Idaho is still home to many larger international companies and franchises, which in return contribute tremendously to the state’s impressive economic strength, despite the state’s size, Idaho packs a large economic punch.

Who is the Largest Employer in Idaho?

There are several large employers in Idaho and they include the following:

  • ADM Edible Bean Specialties
  • Micron Technology
  • Idaho
  • State of Idaho
  • WinCo Foods
  • Lamb Weston Holdings
  • Boise Cascade
  • Employers Resource Management …
  • University of Idaho
  • J.R. Simplot

There isn’t just one fundamental reason why people are deciding to call Idaho their new home, and subsequent place of work and business, there are so many valid reasons and contributing factors.

Typical facts about Idaho include glorious forests, magical landscapes, and unique towns, boasting diverse cultures, and much, much more, which certainly adds to the state’s popularity surge, and makes the place one of the most attractive states in the U.S.

Business Facts About Idaho

With the many opportunities presented to aspiring entrepreneurs, business owners, and employees, Idaho is surely becoming one of the best places for business in the nation, which is evident in the state’s pro-business approach, and economic strength.

Despite already having one of the more stable U.S. economies, Idaho’s economy is continuously growing with small businesses driving this growth. These small businesses (and large businesses) thrive within the state through access to business resources, capital investments, free advisories, and the state’s access to large consumer markets.

Economic facts about Idaho

Is it expensive to live in Idaho?

When you compare the cost of living in Idaho with other states you can definitely see that Idaho is a comparatively cheaper place to live than many other states. However, the average house price in Idaho is around $315,000, with the national average being $284,000.

Despite the house prices being a little higher than average, the rest of the cost of living is low, for example, grocery costs are lower than the national average, and healthcare costs are significantly lower too. Idaho, while certainly not being the most affordable state out of all 50, is significantly more cost-efficient than a lot of other states.

Here Are Some Business Facts About Idaho

  • There are over 169,000 Small Businesses in Idaho making up 99.2% of overall businesses in the state.
  • There are over 325,000 Small Business employees in Idaho making up over 56% of all Idaho employees in the state.
  • There are over 1,400 Small Business exporters in Idaho.
  • The Science and Technology sector in Idaho accounts for 25% of the state’s revenue.
  • Over 70% of the state’s exports hail from the Science and Technology sector.
  • Food production has always been the backbone of Idaho, with an abundance of natural resources readily available.
  • The most popular job in Idaho is the retail salesperson profession, which employs around 22,720 annually.

Resources on Idaho’s economy and support you can get

Business and economic support programs:

Additional resources:

Interesting US State Facts


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Jason Coles

Jason Coles is the Founder of Foreign USA and its Chief Content Writer and Editor. Recognized as a prolific business plan writer by many prominent immigration attorneys in the U.S. who refer his services to their clients regularly, Jason has written over 1,365 business plans across the past 17+ years for start-up companies and franchises looking to expand their footprint in the United States. Jason is considered a seasoned expert in his field. He creates detailed business plans for his clients that include five-year financial projections, market and industry analysis reports, demographic studies, organizational charts, job descriptions, employee hiring plans, and more.