Filed Under:

    Pew Study: Americans In The Northeast Have More Economic Mobility

    Play associated audio

    A new study from the Pew Charitable Trusts finds economic mobility differs significantly across the United States. The report finds Americans are more likely to move up the economic ladder if they live in the northeast.

    The states with the highest mobility rankings are Maryland, New York and New Jersey. During the 10-year period studied, residents there were more likely to have experienced stronger income growth and to have raised their economic standing relative to other Americans. People in those states were also less likely to be downwardly mobile. Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Utah also scored well.

    "The fact that different state residents experienced different rates of mobility means where you live matters," said Erin Currier, director of Pew's Economic Mobility Project.

    Nine states in the South, including Texas and Florida, had worse economic mobility than the national average. Oklahoma, Louisiana and South Carolina had the lowest scores. Currier says other Pew studies have identified the factors that most affect mobility.

    "We know that there are certain drivers of mobility and they include things like educational attainment, savings and asset building and neighborhood poverty during childhood, among other things," said Currier.

    Two-thirds of African-Americans grew up in poor neighborhoods, and they are less likely to move up the economic ladder and more likely to move down than other Americans.

    (John Ydstie is correspondent for NPR.)

    Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit


    From A Weirdo Nerd To A Guy Who Plays One On TV

    NPR's Ari Shapiro talks with the actor Rainn Wilson about his new memoir, The Bassoon King: My Life in Art, Faith, and Idiocy.

    How Long Can Florida's Citrus Industry Survive?

    The USDA recently stunned growers when it projected the smallest orange harvest for Florida in more than 50 years. The culprit: A tiny insect that's killing off the state's trees — and industry.

    Snapshots 2016: Trump's Message Resonates With A Master Cabinet Maker

    From time to time during this election season we'll be introducing you to ordinary people that our reporters meet out on the campaign trail. Today: a snapshot from a Donald Trump rally in New Hampshire.

    Someday A Helicopter Drone May Fly Over Mars And Help A Rover

    NASA is building a 2-pound helicopter drone that would help guide the vehicle on the Red Planet's surface. That way, the rover wouldn't need to wander as much to find its way around.

    Leave a Comment

    Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.