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Ongoing talk of Florida's exodus of residents may stretch reality given modest '09 gains



Perhaps the fears over the exodus of Floridians from our state is a tad exaggerated. We're not a people magnet like Florida was in the 1980s, but we're not losing many -- if any -- residents these days, either. It's a Goldilocks "not too hot and not too cold" migration situation for the Sunshine State.

So says United Van Lines and its 33rd "migration study of migration in and out of states for 2009, United Van Lines has tracked shipment patterns annually on a state-by-state basis since 1977.

Florida fell in the middle of the state pack, what United Van Lines calls the "balanced" states that had roughly as many people moving in as moving out. Specifically, United Van Lines saw 19,523 total shipments in and out of Florida last year. Of those, 10,145 or 52 percent were inbound and 9,378 or 48 percent were outbound. So that's a slightly positive gain based on moving van stats. Here are more details.

The big inbound winners? Southern and western states. In order: Washington, D.C. (grow, government, grow), Oregon, Arkansas, Nevada, Wyoming, Idaho, Colorado, Georgia, New Mexico, Texas and North Carolina.

The big outbound "losers"of population? Upper midwest and some New England states. In order: Michigan (shrinking auto industry), Illinois, New Jersey, Indiana, Pennsylvania, North Dakota,Minnesota, Wisconsin, Maine and New Hampshire.

For 2009, the study is based on the 143,194 interstate household moves handled by United among the 48 contiguous states and Washington D.C.

-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist

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