Racial Differences in Mobility Rates in the United States by Educational Attainment

movingNew data from the U.S. Census Bureau documents the number of citizens who moved from one residence to another between 2015 and 2016.

Blacks in the United States are more likely to move than Whites. In the 2015-to-2016 period, almost 6 million African Americans, nearly 14 percent of the entire Black population of the United States changed their residence. For non-Hispanic White Americans, slightly less than 10 percent changed their residence during the period.

Most of these moves for African Americans were local. Nearly 65 percent of African Americans who moved went to different residences in the same county. Nearly 12 percent of all African Americans who moved went to a different state and 2.6 percent moved abroad.

When we factor in educational attainment, we discover some interesting differences between Blacks and Whites. The racial gap in moving rates is significantly higher for those with lower levels of education. For those who did not finish high school, 8.2 percent of Whites and 11.6 percent of Blacks changed residences. About 12 percent of Black adults who graduated from high school but had no college experience moved between 2015 and 2016. For Whites with only a high school education, 7.5 percent moved.

For college graduates, 10.6 percent of all African Americans changed residences between 2015 and 2016. For White college graduates the figure was slightly lower at 9.3 percent. For those with a graduate or professional degree 9.6 percent of Blacks and 8.5 percent of Whites moved between 2015 and 2016.

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