Of all the states, few had more residents leave in 2020 than Massachusetts.
It’s not just Massachusetts, though. Due to the large metro centers on the New England/Northern East Coast, there's typically a lot of movement. The trend has tilted toward more people leaving than coming in, however, since at least the 1980s, according to data provided by national shipping company United Van Lines.
According to an analysis of shipping patterns in 2020, out of all in/outbound traffic - 56 percent of all traffic was to leave Massachusetts.
Other places where people appear to have left in high numbers are along the East Coast - New Jersey and New York were the states where the most people left followed by Illinois, then Connecticut. Massachusetts is the 8th state that experienced the most moveouts in 2020, according to United Van Lines.
New Jersey had the biggest loss - 70 percent of traffic was outbound, meaning only 30 percent came in.
United Van Lines said the places people left were typically large urban areas and other places where COVID-19 has hit the hardest - California, Kansas, North Dakota, Ohio, and Maryland round out the top 10 states with the most people moving out in 2020.
When asked why they were leaving Massachusetts, 35 percent of survey respondents said it was for a job or career advancement - it was the top reason to leave. People also left to retire (24 percent), for family reasons (24 percent), change in lifestyle (20 percent), or for their health (5 percent).
The older a person was, the more likely they were to move out of Massachusetts in 2020 - more than half of the people who left were ages 55 or older.
It seems that most of the people who left Massachusetts were top earners. Nearly 50 percent of people who moved out of state said their household earned $150,000 or more per year. Only 6 percent of the people who moved away had annual earnings of $50,000 or less.
It wasn’t all goodbyes in 2020, however. After all, 43 percent of the overall traffic was inbound to Massachusetts.
The biggest reason people gave for moving to Massachusetts was for a job opportunity or career advancement (40 percent), followed by family (30 percent). Only 6 percent of people moved to Massachusetts for their health and 12 percent came here to retire.
The ages of people moving to Massachusetts were more diverse than the people leaving. About 20 percent of incoming traffic was from people ages 18-34, no doubt a reflection of enrollment in Massachusetts’ many colleges and universities.
Interestingly, rich people left and moved to Massachusetts at the same rate - about 50 percent of in- as well as out-bound traffic in the state were among households earning $150,000 or more annually. The less money a family or individual earned, the less able or likely they were going to be able to move to Massachusetts.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.