States' Fiscal Health

States' Fiscal Health



Pew's states' fiscal health initiative provides data, analysis, and guidance to help states navigate their fiscal challenges and identify and understand potential policy approaches. We examine key trends in state economies and budgets, and research and advance promising approaches to managing volatile state finances in an era of heightened uncertainty.

Why Understanding States' Fiscal Health Matters

As states move through a slow and uneven economic recovery, policymakers are considering how to better weather the ups and downs of the economic cycle. In many states, revenues are gradually recovering but have not yet returned to pre-recession levels, and rising health care, education, and infrastructure costs are outpacing revenue growth. The ways in which policymakers confront these challenges will affect states and the nation for years to come.

How We Conduct Our Work

Through both research and advocacy, Pew illuminates states’ fiscal challenges and helps lawmakers and other key stakeholders identify and understand potential policy options. We produce original research, including comprehensive 50-state assessments that compare and contrast states’ experiences and highlight promising approaches. And we convene policy leaders and experts in the field to discuss common challenges and learn from each other.


February 4, 2014

Managing Uncertainty

This report is the first in a series that will offer policymakers strategies to improve their states’ long-term fiscal health and manage budget uncertainty. More
  • Opinion
January 8, 2014

Will States Be Ready for the Next Recession?

With revenue on the upswing, now is the time for states to set money aside to cope with the next downturn. But they also should take steps to dampen revenue volatility. More
April 21, 2014

Fiscal 50: State Trends and Analysis

Pew’s Fiscal 50: State Trends and Analysis presents 50-state data on key fiscal, economic, and demographic indicators and analyzes their impact on states’ long-term fiscal health. More
  • Report
July 23, 2013

The State Role in Local Government Financial Distress

The Pew Charitable Trusts conducted a study examining the range of state involvement in local government finances that drew on current literature, statutes, a survey of state officials, and interviews with government finance analysts. More
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