The Seasonality of Moves: 2009

August 20, 2011
Peter Mateyka and Matthew Marlay


This paper analyzes the seasonality of moves in the United States, an important topic for schools, businesses, service providers, and others whose work may vary by time of the year. Using migration data from the 2008 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), we first determine the distribution of moves throughout the year. We next look at detailed demographic characteristics of movers to determine how much variation in mobility exists by race, nativity, age, family status, income, etc. After analyzing the seasonality of moves in the 2008 panel, we then examine changes in the seasonality of moves over time. In this section of the paper, we use historical SIPP data (from the 1993, 1996, 2001, 2004, and 2008 panels) to investigate the extent of change over the past two decades and to determine whether domestic migration patterns have remained constant over that time or whether they differ from the patterns of 20 years ago.