The 17th annual Kosmont-Rose Institute Cost of Doing Business Survey is out and it tells the same old story: California is an expensive place to do business. The annual survey measures the cost of doing business in 421 cities around the country. The report revealed California is an expensive place to do business placing one-third of the top 40 most expensive cities. Only four California cities occupy places in the 40 least expensive cities.

Larry Kosmont, President and CEO of Kosmont Companies noted, “California puts its own cities in a difficult spot.  If a municipality succeeds in attracting a new or expanding firm, that new employer is inevitably squeezed by increasing local fees and the underlying cost of the state’s high tax schedule.”

The Cost of Doing Business Survey was started in 1994 by Kosmont as a service provided by his nationally known real estate and economic development advisory firm. Originally, the survey analyzed cities in Southern California. In 2004, Kosmont joined forces with the Rose Institute of State and Local Government at Claremont McKenna College to conduct the survey.

Over the years, the study has grown to reflect business costs around the country. Kosmont said, “Each year we have found more and more cities using it to evaluate their attractiveness vis à vis other cities. It is being used by corporations contemplating a move to sharpen their focus and narrow their options.”

According to the survey, the most expensive cities in California in 2011 to do business are … (in alphabetical order): Berkeley, Beverley Hills, Culver City, Inglewood, Los Angeles, Oakland, San Bernardino, San Francisco, and Santa Monica.

Of the ten most expensive cities to do business in the country, San Francisco was the only California city on the list. There were no California cities on the least expensive list.

No surprise that Los Angeles County and the Bay Area are the most expensive areas in the state to do business. On the other hand, the San Diego area is one of the most affordable.

For more information on the Kosmont-Rose Institute Cost of Doing Business Survey you can go here.