Population mobility hits 47-year low in May

SEOUL, The number of South Koreans who moved to different residences in the country declined to the lowest level in 47 years in May due to population aging and fewer housing transactions, data showed Wednesday.

The number of people who changed their residences came to 523,000 last month, down 6.1 percent from a year earlier, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

The tally marked the lowest since May 1975, when it came to 480,000.

Population mobility dropped for the 17th consecutive month in May.

The decline mainly resulted from the decreasing number of people in their 20s and 30s, who tend to frequently change their residences due to houses and work, amid low birthrates and rapid aging.

Housing transactions also declined as home prices stabilized in a downward trend due to rising interest rates and tighter lending rules.

The population mobility rate -- the percentage of those relocating per 100 people -- reached a record low of 12 percent in May, down 0.8 percentage point from the previous year.

The South Korean capital of Seoul and eight other cities and provinces posted net population outflow, while Gyeonggi Province that surrounds Seoul and seven other cities and provinces recorded a net inflow.

Seoul chalked up a net outflow of 3,082 in May, while the most populous Gyeonggi Province reported a net inflow of 3,719 last month.

A growing number of Seoulites move to the adjacent province to find cheaper houses.

Source: Yonhap News Agency