$100 in Montana Goes Further than Most States, But Not Further Than Neighbors
A new study by the Tax Foundation compared the cost of living between each of the 50 states and found that 100 dollars goes a lot further in some states than others.
"It would include groceries, rent, housing, healthcare, education... you know, anything that households spend their money on," said Tax Foundation Economist Lyman Stone who worked on the study The Real Value of $100 in Each State. "You get the most bang for your buck in Mississippi, Arkansas, South Dakota, Missouri, Alabama, those states, whereas the real losers here are D.C., Hawaii, California, New York, and New Jersey."
Stone and his team found that 100 dollars was worth less than 85 dollars in Washington D.C., while being the equivalent of 116 dollars in Missouri. Montana was near the middle of the pack with a value of 106 dollars.
"Prices in Montana are a little bit cheaper than the national average, but not that much," Stone said. "I think some people were surprised to see that it tends to be rural places have lower prices and Montana is so non-urban, you'd think that it would have lower prices. But, as you all out in Montana know, shipping goods out to Montana isn't the cheapest thing."
In the region, Montana’s buying power is outperformed by every border state except Wyoming. For example, a 100 dollar bill will stretch an extra seven dollars further in South Dakota than it will in Montana.