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Thursday, June 02, 2011

Labor Mobility: Starting to Increase

by Calculated Risk on 6/02/2011 05:44:00 PM

From the Financial Times: US job relocation activity picks up sharply

Companies that specialise in corporate relocations said they were seeing double-digit increases in their businesses compared with the same period a year ago. They added that corporate relocations ... are far outpacing more modest gains in other types of moves such as those by members of the military or government employees.
excerpt with permission
This may be increasing, but it is from a very low level.

Challenger, Gray & Christmas tracks manager mobility each quarter. In 2010, there were a record low percent of job seekers who relocated for a new position (percent of those who found jobs). The percentage picked up a little in Q1 2011, but it is an easy comparison to last year.

Manager Mobility Click on graph for larger image in new window.

Here is the quarterly data from Challenger, Gray through Q1 2011. Mobility has been trending down for some time, but collapsed in 2010.

It appears the lower mobility was related to the housing market. The Financial Times notes that the first question many companies ask when interviewing out-of-area potential hires is: "What do you owe on your house?"

It is tough to move when you can't sell your home. Sometimes the new employer will pick up the short fall for key executives and managers, but it is probably too expensive for potential hires with serious negative equity.