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UPDATE: States that workers want to escape from the most

UPDATE: States that workers want to escape from the most

07/15/2014

By Catey Hill, MarketWatch

Most employees are less than thrilled about going to work each day: Unhappy workers outnumber happy ones by two to one, according to a Gallup poll released last year. And that may be more true in some states than others.

According to data released Tuesday by job search site Indeed.com, some states have a much higher percentage of workers who are looking for employment outside of their state's lines than others. Indeed, 56% of job seekers in Washington, D.C., 47.8% in Wyoming, 46.8% in West Virginia, 46.5% in North Dakota and 44.6% in New Hampshire are looking for work in another state (these are the top five states in terms of percentage of job seekers looking for work outside of states lines), the survey revealed. That's compared with just 27.8% of people who are doing this nationwide. Meanwhile, job seekers in Texas (18.8%), Florida (19.3%), Michigan (22.2%), California (2.2%) and Georgia (23.2%) are the least likely to be seeking jobs out of state. The survey looked at the search data on Indeed.com from May 2013 to April 2014; the researchers defined a cross-border job seeker as someone who, based on their IP address, was searching for jobs using a different state name than the one he was located in.

So what's driving these job seekers to look elsewhere? In general, the local economy, not surprisingly, is the top reason people look elsewhere for jobs, explains Tara Sinclair, one of the researchers on the report. And people tend to look for jobs in larger states more often than smaller ones. Plus, the larger the share of the population with a bachelor's degree and the higher the median income and home values in that state, the higher the percentage of people seeking work outside of state lines. And when the weather is cold (like this winter), there are jumps among those in colder-weather states in job searches to warm areas, Sinclair says.

There are also variations from state to state: Residents of Washington, D.C., for example, likely look in surrounding areas more often because the D.C. area is so tiny and so easily commutable to other areas, she says. And the types of jobs people search for in other states vary as well: California is a hotbed for IT and nursing job searches, while New York is popular for accounting jobs.

There are some states that job seekers are far more likely to look in than others. More job seekers look for employment in Texas than any other state; that's followed by Florida, California, New York and Georgia. Meanwhile, job seekers are least likely to look for employment in South Dakota, Rhode Island, Wyoming, Vermont and New Mexico. There is also a strong regional effect with job seekers tending to look for jobs in neighboring states. "They like it because they can still drive home and still see relatives relatively easily," says Sinclair.

-Catey Hill; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com

 

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