Monday, August 07, 2000

Workers stay put at jobs

Fewer relocating for employment

By Jerry Langdon
Gannett News Service

        It is now 17 percent less likely than a year ago that job seekers will relocate for a job opportunity, which is more bad news for labor-strapped employers, according to Census Bureau figures analyzed by the job consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

        In the first half of 2000, only 21 percent of jobless managers and executives moved in order to take a new job, down from 25 percent who relocated the first six months of 1999.

        By contrast, 43 percent of job seekers in the first half of 1993 chose to move for a new position.

        The data are supported by government figures that show Americans are moving less than at any other time since the Census Bureau began tracking the numbers in 1947.

        “Helping to slow relocation is the strongest economy in 30 years,” consulting firm CEO John A. Challenger said. “Jobs are plentiful with the exception of a handful of regions. If someone loses a job, the odds are good that another one can be found in the same area.”

        Other factors:

        • Increased rate of home ownership tends to decrease desires to move.

        • Dual-income families in which both the husband and wife have good salaries have risen, and the chances of both getting good jobs in a relocation is not always high.

        • With the aging population, the issue of care takes on significance, particularly if the parents live in the same area as their children.


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