State leaders say they're not surprised. Illinois ranks so low because of its budget and pile of debt. The state has some of the highest debt total in the country and also has the lowest credit rating.
The study considered other things like education level, standard of living and unemployment numbers. State leaders say it's not all their fault though. It has taken years to get to this point and lawmakers today need to work harder to dig the state out.
In the 2011 study Illinois ranked #49. That means this year's score is an improvement. Illinois was only beat out by Rhode Island and California, which came in last. The best state is North Dakota.