, Volume 55, Issue 6, pp 2161–2180 | Cite as

Interstate Migration and Employer-to-Employer Transitions in the United States: New Evidence From Administrative Records Data

  • Henry Hyatt
  • Erika McEntarfer
  • Ken Ueda
  • Alexandria Zhang


Declines in migration across labor markets have prompted concerns that the U.S. economy is becoming less dynamic. In this study, we examine the relationship between residential migration and employer-to-employer transitions in the United States, using both survey and administrative records data. We first note strong disagreement between the Current Population Survey (CPS) and other migration statistics on the timing and severity of any decline in U.S. interstate migration. Despite these divergent patterns for overall residential migration, we find consistent evidence of a substantial decline in economic migration between 2000 and 2010. We find that composition and the returns to migration have limited ability to explain recent changes in interstate migration.


Migration Labor reallocation Job-to-job flows Employment Matched employer-employee data 



We thank Rob Valletta, James Spletzer, and participants in the 2016 Allied Social Science Association conference and the U.S. Census Bureau research lunch for helpful comments and suggestions. This research was principally conducted while Ken Ueda and Alexandria Zhang were employees of the U.S. Census Bureau. Any opinions and conclusions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the U.S. Census Bureau. All results have been reviewed to ensure that no confidential data are disclosed.

Supplementary material

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ESM 1 (PDF 144 kb)


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Copyright information

© This is a U.S. government work and its text is not subject to copyright protection in the United States; however, its text may be subject to foreign copyright protection 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Henry Hyatt
    • 1
  • Erika McEntarfer
    • 1
  • Ken Ueda
    • 2
  • Alexandria Zhang
    • 3
  1. 1.Center for Economic StudiesU.S. Census BureauWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Office of the Comptroller of the CurrencyWashingtonUSA
  3. 3.The Pew Charitable TrustsWashingtonUSA

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