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Fargo one of country's best cities to start a business in 2017

FARGO—Fargo is one of the best cities in America to start a new business in 2017, according to a new report.

HeroPay, a California-based startup for merchant payment processing, released its new study last week that conducted local market surveys and looked into 17 metrics of local data to put together its new rankings.

Fargo was ranked fourth overall, while Sioux Falls, S.D., was ranked ninth in the list of top cities to start a business in 2017.

Fargo got high marks for its low unemployment rate (1.9 percent) and percentage below the poverty line (5.1 percent), as well as a short 16.8-minute average commute to work.

Several other cities in the region ranked in the top 50, including Bismarck (14th), Grand Forks (18th), Rapid City, S.D., (29th) and Rochester, Minn. (34th).

The startup's survey of about 150 small-business owners found entrepreneurs are most worried about labor costs (51 percent), followed by taxes (47 percent) and access to education (33 percent). About 45 percent of respondents expect the economy to shrink in 2017, while 37 percent think it will expand this year.