Interstate Migration and Employer-to-Employer Transitions in the U.S.: New Evidence From Administrative Records Data
37 Pages Posted: 28 Oct 2016
Date Written: October 1, 2016
Recent evidence has suggested that interstate migration is in decline in the United States, which might imply that the labor market is becoming more rigid. However, the sharp post-2000 decline in the non-imputed interstate migration rate in the Current Population Survey (CPS), which has received considerable attention, is not reflected in other available data. In this paper, we use administrative records data to investigate labor mobility and migration within the U.S. We investigate the discrepancy in recent migration trends in the CPS and migration rates derived from administrative records sources using CPS micro data linked to administrative records on residential location. We find that a substantial fraction of CPS respondents who are cross-state migrants in the administrative records data do not report a cross-state move in the CPS, and that this disagreement has grown over time. Despite this disagreement in recent trends in overall interstate migration, rates and trends related to economic migration are remarkably similar in available data sources.
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