As Economy Improves, More Americans Pack Up and Move Increasingly older people, many headed to Florida, new Census data finds By Ruth Brown, Newser Staff Posted Sep 28, 2013 3:53 PM CDT 99 comments Comments (Shutterstock) (Newser) – In search of greener pastures? You're not alone: More than 7 million Americans moved state last year, the highest number in four year. But it isn't just young folks seeking out new horizons, reports the Wall Street Journal, middle-aged and older Americans are increasingly the ones relocating long-distances. The percentage of movers aged 35 to 54 rose to 9.9% from 9.5% in the past year, while movers aged 18 to 34 went down from 21.5% to 20.8%, according to new Census data. The numbers are a "good omen" for the economy, says a Brookings Institution demographer, indicating older people are benefiting from the country's economic recovery and many no longer owe more on their house than it's worth. New trends reflect pre-recession patterns, reports the Journal: more Americans are moving West and South from the Northeast, and people are once again heading to retirement hotspots Arizona and Florida. The Sunshine State is proving particularly popular, gaining 109,000 domestic migrants in 2012—a 77% bump from 2011, and its largest number in seven years.