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Record-low household moves continue into 2009

New Census Bureau figures showing Americans moved last year at the lowest rate in 40 years is consistent with industry data compiled by the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA), which also finds the trend continuing into 2009.

Data from the Census Bureau's "Geographical Mobility: 2008" showed the national mover rate declined from 13.2 percent in 2007 to 11.9 percent in 2008 — the lowest since the bureau began tracking the data in 1948.

AMSA's figures show household goods shipments down by nearly 20 percent during the first quarter of this year, continuing the downward trend tracked by the non-profit trade association since 2005 when the nation's home mortgage crisis began to build.

"There's no doubt that many Americans -- and as a result, our members -- have been hard-hit by a triple-whammy," according to Linda Bauer Darr, AMSA president and CEO. "A virtual halt in new home construction, followed by a tightening of the mortgage market, is still being felt and is likely to continue well into 2009. In addition, the scarcity of employment nationally removes a traditional reason to relocate -- finding a better job."

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