I’ve frequently argued that differences in state income tax rates help to explain interstate migration patterns, especially for high-income individuals, Places like Tennessee, Texas and Florida are drawing residents from more highly taxes areas. Bloomberg reporter Jonathan Levin recently made the following claim about Jeff Bezos’s decision to move to Florida:
Lastly, I’d be remiss to ignore taxes completely. Washington, where Bezos founded Amazon in 1994, recently approved a new 7% capital gains tax targeting investment profits over $250,000, and that always stood to have a big impact on Bezos, who has sold down billions in Amazon.com stock over the years. In March, after the state Supreme Court upheld the new tax, his fellow Washington billionaire Ken Fisher announced (with characteristic grandstanding) that he was moving his money-management firm to zero-state-tax Texas. Bezos didn’t mention taxes explicitly, but the math must have crossed his mind.
Perhaps Bloomberg editors were unhappy with his article, as they added the following headline:
Bezos’ Miami Move Is Not About Washington’s Taxes
The billionaire is returning to a city where he went to high school and where his parents live — it’s as simple as that.
Really, that simple? (Most people probably never look beyond the headline.)
PS. On September 24, Bloomberg published an article full of nonsensical made-up figures. Nearly six weeks later, they have yet to correct the article. Do they have an editor?