Population mobility hits 49-year low in July

SEJONG-- The number of South Koreans who moved to different residences in the country sank to a 49-year low in July due to population aging and anemic housing transactions, data showed Wednesday.

The number of people who changed their residences came to 460,000 last month, down 18.3 percent from a year earlier, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

The reading marked the lowest since July 1973, when it came to 448,000, and population mobility dropped for the 19th consecutive month in July.

The plunge resulted largely from a demographic change and a decline in housing transactions.

People in their 20s and 30s tend to frequently change their residences due to housing prices and work. But the share of such young adults has continued to fall amid low birthrates, while that of senior citizens has risen due to rapid population aging.

Housing transactions remained sluggish as home prices fell due to rising interest rates.

The population mobility rate -- the percentage of those relocating per 100 people -- came to 10.6 percent in July, down 2.4 percentage points from a year ago.

Seoul chalked up a net outflow of 1,576 people last month, while the western port city of Incheon and Gyeonggi Province, the most populous province that surrounds the capital, posted net inflows of 3,628 and 2,228, respectively.

A growing number of Seoulites are moving to the adjacent province and Incheon to find cheaper homes.

Seoul, the country's second-largest city of Busan and eight other cities and provinces posted net outflows, with Incheon, Gyeonggi and five others registering net inflows, according to the data.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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