A few days ago I posted about Pushes and Pulls, this post is in the same vein, trying to figure out what drives/brings folks from/to different places. The article I referenced is; http://www.migrationpolicy.org/pubs/americas_emigrants.pdf
This study features information and conclusions on Mexico and Panama but since I live in Panama I focused mostly on Panama.
I’ve gone straight to the Conclusion (I like to cut to the chase, especially on very long articles) and cut/pasted some of the more significant findings (to me, YMMV). I also read “What Everybody Ought to Know About Those Who Choose to Move to Panama and Mexico”, an article summary of the same study. I’ve also included some of their summarizations//quotes.
”By and large, most successful Americans abroad “are running to rather than running from,“ …
“While people are looking for something new, they’re not giving up their citizenship,” … prefers the word relocation to emigration.
According to census figures between 1990 and 2000, Mexico saw the number of US-born senior residents increase by 17 percent, while Panama saw a 136 percent increase during this period.
Some retirees noted that they could no longer afford health care or were not eligible for health insurance in the United States, which prompted their moves. These findings challenge the literature’s depiction of retirees abroad as “amenity-seeking” migrants, indicating that they may also move for more basic needs.
… some retirees may not desire to become fully integrated into a local community. For them, the push factors in the United States may have outweighed particular pulls toward Mexico or Panama, or pulls may have included the US expatriate community and economic factors, but not the culture or people of the country.
This is from the Social Security Official Website:
- An estimated 159 million workers, 94% of all workers, are covered under Social Security.
- 51% of the workforce has no private pension coverage.
- 34% of the workforce has no savings set aside specifically for retirement.
- $1,234 average monthly benefit for retired workers
Receiving $1234 would not be considered rich by American standards but would be considered rich in some areas of Panama where the average wage in 2012 is +-$500 nationwide (I couldn’t get any hard numbers for 2011).
I’m not going to sum this up, I put it out for you to read and ponder, you can make of it what you will and act accordingly…