Governor Doyle: Announces Six Wisconsin Cities in Top Ranking of “Financially Fit” Metropolitan Areas

Ethnie Groves, Governor Doyle’s Office,

Cities Include Madison, Green Bay, Appleton-Oshkosh-Neenah, Wausau,
Sheboygan, & La Crosse

Governor Jim Doyle announced today that according to a study
released at the U.S. Conference of Mayors annual meeting in Washington,
D.C., six Wisconsin cities are in the top rankings of “financially fit”
metropolitan areas of the U.S.

“The results of this study, combined with the surge in our
manufacturing sector and job growth that is outpacing all of our
is a sign that Wisconsin is on the move,” Governor Jim Doyle said. “Great
things are happening with Wisconsin’s economy.”

The new study by InCharge Institute of America, a nonprofit
organization specializing in personal finance education, research, and
credit counseling, ranked 314 areas by looking at how they measured up in
offering the economic climate and conditions that promote financial
for their citizens.

Madison ranked second in the mid-sized (200,000 to 500,000
population) metropolitan cities, Green Bay ranked fourth, and
Appleton-Oshkosh-Neenah ranked fifth. In the smaller regions (fewer than
200,000), Wausau ranked fourth, Sheboygan was seventh, and La Crosse was

The financial fitness study analyzed five factors to
determine rankings:

* Real disposable income,
* Employment opportunities,
* Credit worthiness,
* Levels of savings, and
* Refinancing activity.

Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions Secretary
Lorrie Keating Heinemann noted that the success of Wisconsin cities in the
study is a tangible result of state efforts to promote not only good
economic policy but also community education and outreach programs.

“We have a strong focus on financial literacy in Wisconsin,”
Secretary Keating Heinemann said. “Strengthening Wisconsin’s financial
future is our goal, and financially literate consumers are fundamental to
growing economy.”

The “Financially Fit Cities Study” noted that three states
accounted for nearly half the total of the top ten cities in the three
population categories: Wisconsin (with 6), California (with 4), and
Minnesota (with 3).