As the American population shifts southward, much of U.S. wealth is also trending that way.
- Americans are migrating south, and with them, they are bringing more wealth and prosperity to the warmer regions of the country.
- More people are filling up the Southland, and electric-vehicle (EV) factories and battery plants are moving in—bringing jobs and opportunities.
- Businesses are shifting south, and new residents are quickly buying up homes.
- The six fastest-growing states in the South, Florida, Texas, Georgia, the Carolinas, and Tennessee, contribute more to the national GDP than the Northeast for the first time.
Why it’s news
This population shift was already on the horizon before the pandemic, but the pandemic accelerated the move. Businesses and residents alike are headed South for lower taxes and cost of living rates. Manufacturers are attracted by relatively inexpensive land opportunities and favorable tax rates.
From 2020 to 2021, around $100 billion of new income came to the Southeast, while the Northeast lost around $60 billion, Bloomberg reports. Since 2020, the Southeast has contributed around two-thirds of all job growth. The southern region is also home to ten out of the 15 fastest-growing cities in the U.S.
Corporations like Dun & Bradstreet and the Mayo Clinic are either moving headquarters or growing operations in the South. During a Bloomberg TV interview, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon says, “We now have more employees in Texas than New York State.”
Backing up a bit
As remote work gives Americans more opportunities to move around the U.S., population trends are beginning to shift. Many residents are drawn to the South, as it offers warmer weather, reduced taxes, and a lower cost of living.
For the states attracting new residents, this means greater potential for tax revenue and further development in the state. States with significant negative net migration may begin to feel the loss in tax revenue and available workers.
Sumter County, Florida, had the largest positive net domestic migration, but southern states are not the only ones drawing a crowd. Whitman County, Washington, closely followed Sumter County. Whitman had the largest population growth of any county on the list, Business Insider reports.
Lassen County in California had the most significant negative net domestic migration. Several counties in New York also saw a significant population decline, including the Bronx and Queens.
Moving south can have its advantages for residents. Florida, in particular, stands out to many movers as the state has no income tax and relatively low taxes in other categories. By comparison, for New York residents making between $13,901 and $80,650 a year, the state income tax rate is 5.85%.
In addition to lower taxes, for the first time in nearly 40 years, Florida has more available jobs than New York, Bloomberg reports.
Beyond lower taxes and more job opportunities, movers may also find more affordable housing further south, though growing populations have likely influenced more recent price increases.