The United States hasn’t been this polarized since the Civil War. With stark divides between red and blue states and extreme partisan battling, spurred on by a controversial president and social media algorithms, people are leaving some states in droves for others.
Another big factor driving people moving from state to state within the US has to do with economic prospects. While some states are seeing massive influxes of new residents thanks to their growing economies, others are seeing people flee because of their stifling, set-in-stone economies that have been cemented for over a century.
Which states are the biggest winners and losers? Read on to find out.
The two states losing the most population are New Jersey and Illinois. New Jersey, right next to the number-three population loser, New York, is often seen as being in the shadow of the larger state that it borders. New Jersey is one of the most densely-populated states in the entire country, sporting more cities than Texas. It’s easy to see why people might be moving away from the highly-urbanized, expensive state in the shadow of New York City.
Illinois, meanwhile, is home to the third-largest city in the US, Chicago. The extremely cold temperatures, the high cost of living and the extremely cutthroat business culture in the state all contribute to driving people out. The state has a projected negative population growth for the next several years, even as job growth crawls to a halt.
The states seeing the most inbound population movement are Oregon and Idaho. Oregon, home to Portland, is a high polarized region between partisan left-leaning and right-leaning activists. Over the next five years, household incomes in the state are expected to rise much faster than the rate of neighboring states. The biggest company in the state, Nike, is projecting massive growth in the next few years.
Meanwhile, Idaho is seeing very strong prospects for growth in the coming years. The state’s major industries of lumber and wood, paper, mining, chemicals and food processing are all projected to see growth in the coming years. There is also a growing tech presence in the state, with one of the biggest semiconductor manufacturers in the US, Micron, based out of the Midwestern locale. This has made it a massive draw for newcomers looking to earn more for themselves or their families.