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Voting with their feet: Relative economic conditions and state migration patterns

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  • Sasser, Alicia C.
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    Abstract

    Over the past decade, state and local policymakers and business leaders across the U.S. have expressed concern regarding the ability to attract and retain skilled workers, given the economic climate of their states compared with other parts of the nation. Examining the factors underlying state-level migration trends is important to determine what role, if any, public policy might play in addressing their potential impact on local labor supply. Using data from the Internal Revenue Service for each of the 48 states in the continental United States from 1977 through 2006, this paper examines the role of three economic factors--namely labor market conditions, per capita incomes, and housing affordability--in determining domestic state-to-state migration flows. Estimates from a logistic model of out-migration show that while all three measures of relative economic conditions are significant determinants of migration, the magnitude of their impact varies and has changed considerably over time. For example, the importance of per capita income as a determining factor has fallen considerably since the late 1970s, while that of housing affordability has risen. Interestingly, the role of labor market conditions--while significant throughout the entire 30-year period--was most prominent in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Estimates from the model are used to forecast migration for 2009 for selected states. The results from this exercise are surprisingly accurate when compared to actual state migration patterns for that year.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V89-4YC1JYD-1/2/e1b642b5a6051b5681e3f0c9f96076da
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Regional Science and Urban Economics.

    Volume (Year): 40 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2-3 (May)
    Pages: 122-135

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:40:y:2010:i:2-3:p:122-135

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/regec

    Related research

    Keywords: Migration patterns Relative economic conditions;

    References

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    Cited by:
    1. Hernán Enriquez Sierra & Jacobo Campo Robledo, 2012. "Equilibrio regional y patrones de migración para el continente americano 1960 – 2005: Análisis espacial por panel de datos," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 010388, UNIVERSIDAD CATOLICA DE COLOMBIA.
    2. Hernán Enríquez Sierra & Jacobo Campo Robledo, 2013. "Regional equilibrium and migration patterns in the Americas 1960–2005: Spatial data panel analysis," WORKING PAPERS 010478, UNIVERSIDAD SERGIO ARBOLEDA.
    3. Fu, Yuming & Gabriel, Stuart A., 2012. "Labor migration, human capital agglomeration and regional development in China," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 473-484.
    4. Sauro Mocetti & Carmine Porello, 2010. "How does immigration affect native internal mobility? New evidence from Italy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 748, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    5. Hernán Enríquez Sierra & Carlos Barreto Nieto & Carolina Correa Caro & Jacobo Campo Robledo, 2012. "PRECIO DEL SUELO Y REGALÍAS EN COLOMBIA: Un análisis espacial para los municipios productores de petróleo," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 010252, UNIVERSIDAD CATOLICA DE COLOMBIA.
    6. Modestino, Alicia Sasser & Dennett, Julia, 2013. "Are American homeowners locked into their houses? The impact of housing market conditions on state-to-state migration," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 322-337.
    7. Alessandro Innocenti & Francesca Lorini & Chiara Rapallini, 2014. "Ethnic Heterogeneity, Voting Partecipation and Local Economic Growth. The Case of Belgium," Working Papers - Economics wp2014_03.rdf, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
    8. Hawley, Zackary B. & Rork, Jonathan C., 2013. "The case of state funded higher education scholarship plans and interstate brain drain," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 242-249.
    9. Partridge, Mark D. & Rickman, Dan S. & Olfert, M. Rose & Ali, Kamar, 2012. "Dwindling U.S. internal migration: Evidence of spatial equilibrium or structural shifts in local labor markets?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 375-388.

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