The top five states with the strongest relative growth in new 401(k) plans – a good indicator of economic growth – are mostly found in the West, according to research by Judy Diamond Associates.

The national retirement plan data publisher, a unit of BenefitPro's parent company, Summit Professional Networks, found that Arizona led the way, with 7.22 percent growth in the total number of 401(k) plans in the state.

"New 401(k) plans are strong indicators of the creation of entirely new businesses or businesses that have reached a level of success where they can begin to offer their employees more and better benefits," said Eric Ryles, managing director of Judy Diamond.

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