Sort Selling: Political Polarization and Residential Choice

56 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2021

See all articles by W. Ben McCartney

W. Ben McCartney

Purdue University - Krannert School of Management

John Orellana

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Calvin Zhang

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia

Date Written: March 6, 2021

Abstract

Partisanship and political polarization are salient features of today’s society. We merge deeds records with voter rolls and show that political polarization is more than just “political cheerleading.” Descriptively, homeowners are more likely to sell their homes and move when their next-door neighbors are affiliated with the opposite political party. We use a novel, new-next-door-neighbor identification strategy along with rich demographic control variables and time-by-geography fixed effects to confirm causality. Consistent with a partisanship mechanism, our results are strongest when new next-door neighbors (i) are more likely to be partisan and (ii) live especially close by. Our findings help explain increases in political segregation, improve our understanding of residential choice, and illustrate the importance of political polarization for economic decision-making.

Keywords: Political Polarization, Residential Choice

JEL Classification: D10, H31, R20

Suggested Citation

McCartney, W. Ben and Orellana, John and Zhang, Calvin, Sort Selling: Political Polarization and Residential Choice (March 6, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3799220 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3799220

W. Ben McCartney (Contact Author)

Purdue University - Krannert School of Management ( email )

1310 Krannert Building
West Lafayette, IN 47907-1310
United States

John Orellana

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Calvin Zhang

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia ( email )

Ten Independence Mall
Philadelphia, PA 19106-1574
United States

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