Millennials: Are we recruiting this generation?

By Dave Yochum.  Baby Boomers were the cat’s pajamas back in the 70s and 80s, but that generational cohort has been supplanted by Millennials. Everyone wants them, even though not everyone can communicate with them.

Charlotte is No. 12 on a list of 50 cities that are attracting millennials and helping them prosper—and take over from the generations that preceded them.

First, second and third were San Francisco, Denver and Austin, in that order. Followed by Nashville, San Jose, Raleigh, Portland, Seattle Oklahoma City and Dallas. New Orleans and then Charlotte missed out on the Top 10 by just a single point.

The study, from Magnify Money, used four metrics: Millennial population chage, workforce participation, unemployment rate and median wages.

The overall population of millennials increased by 9.9 percent here, vs 16.2 percent in No. 1 ranked San Francisco. No. 6-ranked Raleigh turned in a 12.7 percent gain in Millennials, reflecting, perhaps a hipper attitude that attracts more like-minded people around the same age.

“Millennials are the generation that grew up as the internet was coming of age. We had the opportunity to explore the world from our home, so, naturally, as we are entering the workforce and begin to create a life of our own, we look for diversity and an assortment of opportunities that a community can provide,” said Justin Ckesepiz, a real estate closing attorney based in Birkdale Village.

In Charlotte, the millennial workforce jumped by 20 percent between 2011 and 2016. San Francisco’s jumped 31 percent. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate for Charlotte millennials dropped from 13.2 percent in 2011, to 8.2 percent in 2016, which is fairly impressive.

There were bigger drops, including Detroit (42.9 percent), Minneapolis (44.4 percent) and Columbus, Ohio (45.7 percent), but Charlotte’s 38.3 percent decline in unemployment for Millennials was on par with San Francisco (-40.3 percent), Raleigh (-39 percent) and Seattle (-40.6 percent).

For millennials who are working, median wages in Charlotte have risen only 14.5 percent from 2011 to 2016. In San Francisco, they skyrocketed 32.4 percent, to $40,304; in Raleigh 22.7 percent. In real numbers, Charlotte’s median Millennial pulled down $28,212 in 2016 vs. $24,641 in 2011.

The Magnify Money study showed millennial populations actually decreased in nine of the 50 metros they analyzed, demonstrating that many Millennials are actively migrating.

Unemployment for the nation as a whole has dropped significantly since 2011, but there’s a big difference between the 38.3 percent drop for millennials in Charlotte and the 20.3 percent drop in for Millennial unemployment in Virginia Beach, we ranked last among Millennial Boomtowns in the Magnify Money study.

New York City-based Magnify was launched in 2014 by former bankers. It helps consumers comparison-shop for financial products with credit card and bank account information.


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