Location, location, location. That old real estate mantra is also the key factor if you want to move up the economic ladder. If you live in the Northeast, you’re more likely to enjoy higher upward and lower downward mobility than the nation as a whole, Pew’s Economic Mobility Project said Wednesday.
Residents of Southern states, on the other hand, face consistently lower upward and higher downward mobility.
These observations were among the findings of the Pew project’s Economic Mobility of the States, a new online interactive tool.
“When it comes to achieving the American dream, it matters where you live,” Erin Currier, project manager of Pew’s Economic Mobility Project, said in a statement. “Understanding that mobility rates differ by state is the first step toward helping policy makers pinpoint what enhances their residents’ mobility.”
The Pew research evaluated economic mobility in three ways: absolute mobility, measuring residents’ average earnings growth over time; and upward and downward relative mobility, measuring people’s rank on the ladder relative to their peers.
The study defined relative peer groups using the national earnings distribution, including all people in the nation, and using the regional earnings distribution, including only people in the same geographic region.