Migration Choices of the Boomerang Generation: Does Returning Home Dampen Labor Market Adjustment?

53 Pages Posted: 30 Jan 2020

See all articles by Sewin Chan

Sewin Chan

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

Katherine M. O'Regan

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

Wei you

NYU Furman Center

Date Written: January 1, 2020

Abstract

This paper documents a linkage between two empirical trends: the low levels of out-migration from weak labor markets, and the increasing rate at which young adults return to live with their parents (‘boomerang’). Using the American Community Survey, we show that boomerang moves are more likely to bring young adults to labor markets with higher unemployment and lower wages. Using the geocoded Panel Study of Income Dynamics and a locational choice model, we find that the likelihood of a non-boomerang location being chosen by a young adult increases with local wages. However, for boomerang moves, wages have zero or a much smaller effect on the selection of locations, and the likelihood that a boomerang location is selected actually increases with the location’s unemployment level. This positive correlation with unemployment is substantive in magnitude and is highest for those without a college degree and for non-whites.

Keywords: Parental coresidence, boomerang, migration, mobility

JEL Classification: R23, J6

Suggested Citation

Chan, Sewin and O'Regan, Katherine M. and You, Wei, Migration Choices of the Boomerang Generation: Does Returning Home Dampen Labor Market Adjustment? (January 1, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3516265 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3516265

Sewin Chan (Contact Author)

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service ( email )

The Puck Building
295 Lafayette Street, Second Floor
New York, NY 10012
United States

Katherine M. O'Regan

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service ( email )

The Puck Building
295 Lafayette Street, Second Floor
New York, NY 10012
United States
212-998-7498 (Phone)
212-995-3890 (Fax)

Wei You

NYU Furman Center ( email )

New York, NY 10012
United States

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