Migration Mystery

Submitted by Rich Toscano on August 25, 2006 - 3:45pm

As I recently tooled around the San Diego Chamber of Commerce website, I came across a document called the "San Diego Economic Bulletin: Forecast 2005 & 2006." This document is a gold mine of the kind of local data that causes a nerd like me to mewl with delight.

But my delighted mewling turned to confused mewling as I read the section on population growth.

The first accompanying chart indicates the U.S. Census Bureau's take on who's coming and going in San Diego. (Readers who are particularly interested or lonely can find the gigantic Census Bureau spreadsheet here.)

read more at voiceofsandiego.org

(category: )

Submitted by Daniel on August 25, 2006 - 4:09pm.

Very interesting. I'm sure you checked this, but I'm going to ask anyways: could the difference in numbers be due to international arrivals (both low-skilled illegals, and highly-skilled employees for the computer and biotech industries)?

Submitted by tickets on August 25, 2006 - 6:49pm.

Probably local govt. figures. Local govs are big on making their own population estimates, projecting off of things like utility hookups and building permits. Of course, if there are a lot of speculative properties that are empty, but hooked up to the grid so that the lights come on during the open house ....

Submitted by powayseller on August 25, 2006 - 9:15pm.

SANDAG reports 2.9 mil people in 2006, a 9% increase over 2000. 75% of San Diegans earned under $75,000 in the 2000 Census Bureau report. 2006 estimates for wages will be up shortly. Great resource! Anyway, where are all these supposed rich people who are going to buy houses here?

Sandag's June 2006 report falsely shows net migration is positive. They rely on the California Dept of Finance data, showing annual net migration into San Diego of 9,600. Is someone up to reading and providing an opinion/analysis piece on their report?

CA Int'l Business Report:
"Meanwhile, because of high housing prices there are disturbing indications that people are "getting out of Dodge".

The latest Census Bureau data for 2005 indicate that 239,416 more native-born Americans left the state than moved in. SANDAG is using incorrect data in their reports. Why do they use exclude the Census Bureau data? That is irresponsible!

The CA Dept. of Finance reports CA home prices rose in June. Is that true? They don't say "median prices rose, although the real estate bubble has burst". They are RE cheerleaders, i.e. saying whatever is necessary to give the impression that the economy is better than it really is. Well, in their own words:

"Despite the drop in sales, home prices rose in June. The median price for single family home sold in June was $575,800-a new record high, although only slightly above the $540,000-$570,000 range that it had been in since June 2005. With a 6.2 percent year-over-year price gain, this was the second consecutive month of sub-10 percent price gains."

Submitted by jg on August 26, 2006 - 7:21am.

Rich, per the Census data table, San Diego County's population moved down from 2,935K in '04 to 2,933K in '05 due to:

Births +45K
Deaths -20K
International in migration +17K
U.S. citizen out migration -43K
Overall -1K

The first chart that you illustrate shows net migration of ~26K, which is the sum of international in migration (+17K) and U.S. citizen out migration (-43K).

The Chamber Pot graph is wrong, if it is calling 'births' 'population growth.' And, it may just be citing incoming migration as 'net migration.'

Anyway, it is clear that the folks who can pay big bills (U.S. citizens) are leaving the county and we're getting folks who can't pay big bills (Mexicans) in their stead (via international migration and births).

Submitted by spice3d on August 26, 2006 - 11:05am.

Based on your chart, I'm guessing that you took the change in population, added back deaths and subtracted births. I tried this formula on CA, LA and OC, and got the following:

2001 2002 2003 2004 2005
CA 229,267 172,038 169,465 83,722 (7,671)
LA 13,339 17,303 1,585 (32,535)(72,881)
OC 9,576 4,962 4,023 (4,762)(21,114)

If this is a valid analysis, the results are crazy!

Submitted by rankandfile on August 26, 2006 - 12:14pm.

Very interesting and ironic, indeed! Why would so many hard-working taxpaying citizens be leaving "America's Finest City?" Perhaps it should be renamed to "America's Finest Immigrant City?"

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.