These 10 states are leading America in creating a crypto economy

Investing in cryptocurrencies is clearly not for the faint of heart. The value of bitcoin has plunged from its high last fall, and others have followed similarly gut-wrenching paths.

But that does not mean that the revolutionary technology behind them, which allows for innovations such as smart contracts and instant peer-to-peer payments, is not here to stay. Because of that, many states are jockeying for leadership in this emerging industry.

With that in mind, CNBC’s America’s Top States for Business study — which scores all 50 states on a broad range of competitive features — is paying special attention to cryptocurrency under this year’s methodology.

Our crucial Cost of Doing Business category has always included the cost of electricity, a key consideration in this power-hungry industry. This year, our Technology and Innovation category includes a measure of each state’s share of computational power or “hash rate.” And our Business Friendliness category gives special consideration to how states are regulating this increasingly important industry.

Based on those metrics, these ten states are leading the way.

10. Texas

A worker installs a new row of Bitcoin mining machines at the Whinstone US Bitcoin mining facility in Rockdale, Texas, on October 9, 2021.

Mark Felix | AFP | Getty Images

“It’s happening,” Republican Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted last year. “Texas will be the crypto leader.”

He may be right. The Lone Star State is consistently at or near the top for mining capacity, running neck and neck with Georgia. Electricity is affordable even before the special deals available for crypto miners, though the state’s independent power grid has had reliability issues. Texas has begun regulating cryptocurrencies with an eye towards giving them a solid foundation for growth.

Mining capacity: No. 2

Electricity cost: No. 16

Regulation: No. 21 (tie)

9. Kentucky

Jacob Melin stands for a portrait at the offices of Crypto Consulting Group LLC in Louisville, Ky.

Luke Sharrett | The Washington Post | Getty Images

7. (tie) Virginia

Director of Technology, Shawn Dailey holds a power cable during construction of a Bitcoin data center in Virginia Beach, Va.,

Steve Helber | AP

7. (tie) Idaho

An electric wind farm outside Boise, Idaho, on May 24, 2021.

Aaronp/bauer-griffin | Gc Images | Getty Images

6. Washington

Washington State Governor Jay Inslee and other leaders speak to the press on March 28, 2020 in Seattle, Washington.

Karen Ducey | Getty Images

5. Utah

A pile of Bitcoins are shown here after Software engineer Mike Caldwell minted them in his shop in Sandy, Utah.

George Frey | Getty Images

4. North Dakota

Kevin O’Leary, chairman of O’shares ETFs for O’Leary Funds Management LP, speaks during the Bitcoin 2022 conference in Miami, Florida, U.S., on Wednesday, April 6, 2022.

Eva Marie Uzcategui | Bloomberg | Getty Images

3. Oklahoma

An engineer inspects a Sapphire Technology Ltd. AMD graphics processing unit (GPU) at the Evobits crypto farm in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2021.

Akos Stiller | Bloomberg | Getty Images

2. Wyoming

Blockchain-based payments firm Ripple Labs has registered a business in Wyoming where there are more ‘crypto-friendly’ laws.

STRF/STAR MAX/IPx | AP

1. Nebraska

Nebraska, Kearney, Great Platte River Road Archway over Interstate 80, Bison Sculpture in Foreground.

Bernard Friel | Universal Images Group | Getty Images

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