State Resources

South Dakota Business Resources

South Dakota is located in the north-central United States. South Dakota’s economy is centered on agriculture due to its fertile soils and abundant grazing lands. Ranches and farms cover over ninety percent of the state, making farming a central way of life for residents.

Railroad construction and gold mining during the 1870s gold rush sparked important growth for South Dakota’s economy. Gambling and tourism have recently increased in importance. Among the more popular destinations are the Badlands and the Black Hills, which features Mount Rushmore, an important symbol of American pride. South Dakota is also recognized as one of the friendliest states for businesses. South Dakota doesn't tax personal income, capital gains, corporate income or corporate capital gains. In addition, there is little crime, and energy costs are relatively low.

Business Data

Per Capita Real GDP$35,842 Rank: 23/50 (2006)
Population754,844 Rank: 46/50 (2000)
Per Capita Personal Income$33,929 Rank: 26/50 (2006)
Unemployment Rate2.60% Rank: 1/50 (2008)
Business Tax Climate IndexRank: 2/50 (2008)
Corporate Tax Rate0
Individual Tax Rate 0
Sales Tax Rate 4%

Business Tax Climate Index

Individual Income Tax Index Rank1
Sales Tax Index Rank
Unemployment Insurance Tax Index Rank
Property Tax Index Rank
Business Tax Climate Index
Corporate Tax Index Rank1

State Information

Nick NameMount Rushmore State
State Web Site
Motto Under God, the people rule

Top 5 Export Partner Countries

Canada, Mexico, China, Hong Kong, United Kingdom

Top 5 Export Merchandise

Machinery Sales Computers and Electronic Products Sales Computers and Electronic Products Manufacturing Electrical Equipment Manufacturing Machinery Manufacturing

Major Cities

Sioux Falls


Total Gross Domestic Product (USD Millions) $33,934.00 (2007)
Per Capita Real GDP (USD)$35,596.00 Rank: 25 (2007)

Population Stats

Population 804,194 Rank: 46 (2008)

Age Distribution

Under 18 Population202,649
Under 18 Percent of Total Population27%
65 and older Population108,131
65 and older Percent of Total Population14%

Gender Distribution

Male Population49.6%
Female Population50.4%
Non-English Speaker (at home)36,509
Net International Immigration3,957
Birth Rate14.7%
Percent of People Under Poverty Level13.6%


Per Capita State Spending$21,278
Energy Expenditures per Person$4,017
Expenditures of State and Local Government Employee-Retirement Systems$254,888


Personal Income$41,062
State Internal Revenue Collection$4,765,559
Cash and Deposits by State Government$541,333
Per Capita State Tax Collection$1,516


High School Graduation Rate82%
Percent of Population with a Bachelor's Degree17.5%
Percent of Population with an Advanced Degree7%

Largest Universities

Black Hills State University South Dakota State University University of South Dakota
High School Graduation Rate82%


Public Road Length (Mile)84,229 (2005)
Gas Tax Rate (%)22%
Highway Planning and Construction (USD Thousands)220,571
Number of Public Airports75

Main Airports

FSD: Sioux Falls




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State Business Links

Argus Leader

Secretary of State

South Dakota Secretary of State
Information on elections, voting, absentee ballots and election returns

Small Business Administration

Top 10 Business Links

Business Research Bureau (BRB)
The bureau is part of the University of South Dakota that primarily conducts economic research of the state. It also uses its research expertise to assist both local and national businesses. Additionally, the BRB is the publisher of the South Dakota Business Review.
South Dakota Chamber of Commerce & Industry
The chamber represents businesses in South Dakota, especially in the areas of corporate taxation and employee compensation. Aside from those, it also creates networking opportunities for its members, and assists them in adapting to regulatory changes.
South Dakota International Business Institute
The SDIBI is a partnership between South Dakota, and Northern State University, that is dedicated to promoting international trade for state businesses. It provides companies with education programs and free consultation, coupled with easy access to financing. The institute also maintains some resources, and an international database to facilitate networking opportunities.
South Dakota Technology Business Center (SDTBC)
The center exists to foster a diverse state economy, by promoting the growth of technology-based businesses. Focused mostly on start-ups, it offers and leases basic infrastructure that entrepreneurs need to establish themselves initially. Other services include consultations, networking, and funding assistance.
State Data Center (SDC)
SDC is a division of the University of South Dakota Business Research Bureau. It is the primary census center for the state, and provides various demographical data. Information can be sorted by county, as well as the year in which they were collected.
U.S. Export Assistance Center of Sioux Falls, SD
The Sioux Falls branch of the Department of Commerce, serving South Dakota, specializes in helping small to medium sized companies develop and execute exporting strategies. Fees vary and are based on the service being provided.