Americans continue march to low-tax states… More Californians consider fleeing… Canada tax haven?

Americans continue their march to low-tax states

The United States Census Bureau released its annual state-by-state population estimates for 2018 in late December. It highlights migration trends across the states and sketches a picture of looming political changes that will take place after the complete Census of 2020.

Idaho, Nevada, Utah and Arizona led the way this past year in overall population growth as a percentage of population.

Once again, Texas and Florida were the big winners in overall population gains, with the Lone Star State gaining more than 379,000 residents from 2017-18 and the Sunshine State posting a gain of more than 322,000.

The big net losers from the report were New York, which lost a total of 48,510 residents, and Illinois, which lost 45,116.

These state-by-state population numbers will alter the makeup of seats in the United States House of Representative during the once-a-decade reapportionment and redistricting process that will commence after the 2020 census.

More Californians are considering fleeing the state as they blame sky-high costs, survey finds

  • A growing number of Californians are contemplating moving the state due to the sky-high cost of living, with sentiment highest among millennials, according to a new study.
  • Fifty-three percent say they are considering fleeing, representing a jump over the 49 percent a year ago.
  • The poll conducted by Edelman Intelligence found the chief reason for dissatisfaction isn’t wildfires or earthquakes but housing cost and availability.

LOS ANGELES — A growing number of Californians are contemplating moving from the state — and not due to wildfires or earthquakes but the sky-high cost of living, according to a survey released Wednesday.

The online survey, conducted last month by Edelman Intelligence, found sentiment of leaving the nation’s most populous state highest among millennials.

Fifty-three percent of Californians surveyed are considering fleeing, representing a jump over the 49 percent polled a year ago.

“There’s no doubt that California’s economy, for all of its strengths when it comes to innovation and creating these industries that people want to be part of, is struggling with high costs,” said Aaron Terrazas, a senior economist with online real estate site Zillow. “Costs have gotten way ahead of incomes in California, and that’s making a lot of people think about whether it’s worth the hurdles.”

According to Edelman, 63 percent of millennials in the 2019 survey indicated they were considering moving from sunny California. The chief reason for dissatisfaction: housing.

 

 

Imagine Canada as a Tax Haven for Americans

(Bloomberg Opinion) — Taxes on rich Americans are probably going up if Democrats win both the presidency and Congress anytime soon. Whether it’s to provide revenue for more government spending on health care or the environment, or simply to reduce inequality, it seems likely that the well-off will pay more. The idea receives wide support:

Exactly which type of taxes would go up, and on which group of rich people, and by how much, remains to be seen. Prominent proposals include Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren’s plan for a 2 percent tax on wealth of more than $50 million and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s idea for a 70 percent tax rate on income of more than $10 million a year.

If and when taxes are raised, an interesting question is how those affected will respond. They can probably be expected to spend more on political campaigns to limit taxes. They will almost certainly engage in more intensive avoidance efforts.

But if that doesn’t work, the affluent could resort to the ultimate dodge — they could leave the country. This is one of the things that forced France to drop its “supertax” of 75 percent on incomes of more than 1 million euros ($1.13 million). That tax, which lasted from 2012 through 2014, caused rich people such as executive Bernard Arnault and actor Gerard Depardieu to move to neighboring Belgium, and made it hard for France to attract senior managers.

The U.S. is hardly France. Other than a few eccentric personalities such as Facebook Inc. co-founder Eduardo Saverin, who renounced his American citizenship in 2015 and moved to Singapore to escape taxes, very few millionaires tend to abandon the richest, most powerful country in the world. The U.S. is home to some of the most important centers of the technology industry, the finance industry and others. And unlike in Europe, there isn’t an abundance of alternative nearby countries to move to, meaning that wealthy American expatriates might have to move far from family and friends.

But if the U.S. raised top tax rates a lot, the situation might change. And there is one other appealing country nearby, which (mostly) speaks the same language as the U.S. Although some Americans think of Canada as a quasi-socialist economy thanks to its single-payer health-care system, it’s not actually a high-tax country. The top federal income tax rate in Canada is 33 percent — lower than the equivalent rate in the U.S. The provincial tax rate in Ontario, home to the business hub of Toronto, is 13.16 percent, similar to the 13.3 percent paid by Californians.

 

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