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Why The Rich Are Disappearing: Taxes?

Last month, I linked (with a favorable comment) to Arthur Laffler’s op-ed in the Wall St. Journal on how high-tax states were losing the rich. Now along comes Daniel Gross of Slate.com with a closer examination of the numbers. The conclusion? Low-tax states are losing even more rich people than the high-tax states:

Comparative tax havens like Florida, Nevada, and Arizona didn’t see an influx of millionaires in 2008. Far from it. In 2008, Las Vegas lost 38 percent of its HNWIs [high net worth individuals], and Phoenix lost 34 percent. Florida, which has no state income tax and hasn’t been talking about one, was a killing field for the rich. The three major metro areas that lost more than 40 percent of millionaires in 2008 were all in no-income-tax Florida–Orlando (42 percent), Miami (42 percent), and Tampa (51 percent). The decline has nothing to do with taxes and everything to do with bursting asset bubbles.

As Glenn Hunter noted on July 15, Dallas hasn’t been hit as hard but we are still down 1.4%.