Millennials today make up the largest generation in the U.S. workforce and account for 21% of all consumer discretionary spending, according to a new report from WalletHub, a personal finance website. Yet they are economically worse off than their parents, despite their higher education and trillion-dollar purchasing power.
That’s largely because millennials entered the job market in the wake of the 2008-2009 financial crisis and found reduced employment prospects and earning potential, then saw their finances take another hit when the pandemic struck.
But the millennial experience is not the same everywhere in the country; Americans in their mid-20s to early 40s are thriving in some states and struggling in others.
In order to determine the most and least livable places for millennials, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across the key dimensions of affordability, education and health, quality of life, economic health and civic engagement.
Researchers evaluated those dimensions using 34 relevant metrics, and graded each one on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for millennials. They then determined each state’s and the District’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its overall score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample.
See the gallery for WalletHub’s 15 worst places for millennials to live.