RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Cities across North Carolina have garnered recognition in recent studies and now the state has been named among the best for business in the United States.

CNBC on Tuesday ranked North Carolina second on its list for “Top States for Business”. Neighboring Virginia took the top spot.

The second overall ranking is North Carolina’s highest in the history of the CNBC study, researchers report.

“North Carolina is a great place to live, raise a family and grow your business and this ranking is additional proof that we are roaring out of this pandemic even stronger than before,” said Governor Roy Cooper.

CNBC ranked the states based on 85 metrics in 10 categories, looking at things such as the cost of doing business, the strength of the workforce, and infrastructure.

“Our study is not an opinion survey,” CNBC said. “We use data from a variety of sources to measure the states’ performance. Under our methodology, states can earn a maximum of 2,500 points. The states with the most are America’s Top States for Business.”

According to the study, North Carolina received high marks for the economy (4th) with solid growth and workforce (6th) with a steady influx of educated workers.

Both high marks may have been what coerced top companies like Apple to expand their footprint, which will bring the Research Triangle the company’s first east coast corporate campus.

In contrast, North Carolina received lower ratings for life, health, and inclusion, ranking 37th.

“As one of only five states with no statewide public accommodation law to protect nondisabled residents against discrimination according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, North Carolina falls short on Life, Health and Inclusion, potentially enough to keep the top spot out of reach,” CNBC’s report said.

North Carolina was followed in the rankings by Utah, Texas and Tennessee.