"U.S. migration typically slows during recessions because new jobs are the primary reason people move across state lines, according to the Pew Research Center. With the country on track to shed more than 2 million jobs this year, there are fewer reasons to move.
William Frey, a senior demographer at the Brookings Institution, said the decrease in migration is notable for its breadth. The housing bust and the recession have slowed migration to fast-growing states in the Sun Belt and the West."
"The long-term trend has been for Americans to leave Northeast and Midwest population centers for warmer, job-creating states in the Sunbelt and West. That movement has slowed, according to the Census. New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Connecticut had much higher growth rates last year than they did during the housing boom earlier this decade. Nevada and Arizona, which over the past few years vied to be the nation's fastest-growing state, saw their rates of growth decrease."
"Two states, Michigan and Rhode Island, lost population, with each state suffering unemployment rates greater than 9%."
From U.S. Census Bureau release:
"Utah was the nation's fastest-growing state between July 1, 2007, and July 1, 2008, as its population climbed 2.5 percent to 2.7 million, according to estimates released today (Dec. 22) by the U.S. Census Bureau.
On the whole, the Northeastern states have gained population at an increasing rate since 2005, a turnaround from their declining growth rates from 2000 to 2005."