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Keywords:rural areas 

Discussion Paper
Rural Households Hit Hardest by Inflation in 2021-22

To conclude our series, we present disparities in inflation rates by U.S. census region and rural status between June 2019 and the present. Notably, rural households were hit by inflation the hardest during the 2021-22 inflationary episode. This is intuitive, as rural households rely on transportation, and especially on motor fuel, to a much greater extent than urban households do. More generally, the recent rise in inflation has affected households in the South more than the national average, and households in the Northeast by less than the national average, though this difference has ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20230118c

Briefing
School Quality as a Tool for Attracting People to Rural Areas

Many rural localities are interested in strategies for retaining residents and attracting newcomers. Recent research indicates that one promising strategy for rural development is maintaining and improving the quality of an area's public schools. In this research, which is the first national study of the relationship between school quality and migration flows in and out of rural areas, better outcomes for students in a rural county's schools were associated with higher migration into that county.
Richmond Fed Economic Brief , Issue 20-08 , Pages 4

Discussion Paper
Have Some Rural Areas Turned the Tide on Population Decline?

According to the most recent county population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, almost half of the Fifth District counties in rural areas or small towns (those with a Rural-Urban Continuum Code (RUCC) of 3-9 and henceforth referred to as "rural") experienced population growth between 2020 and 2023. (See here for more on our use of these definitions for urban and rural.) That figure may seem low considering that nearly three-quarters of urban counties saw population growth over the same period. But what's notable about the growth in these rural counties is that more than half of them ...
Regional Matters

Discussion Paper
How Connected Are Counties in the Fifth District?

Access to expanded employment opportunities and local goods and services is an important factor explaining why certain rural areas are able to retain people and grow. However, this access is far from uniform across rural areas. One way of assessing the economic linkages across areas is by examining intercounty commuting flows. This post classifies rural areas based on commuting flows and uses this information to establish the degree of spatial interactions or connectivity across areas.
Regional Matters

Discussion Paper
Spotlight on Rural Best Practices: Lessons From the 2023 IRA Poster Session

Throughout our region, small towns and rural communities are continually working to improve outcomes for their residents. And we can learn a lot from how different communities, and the organizations within them, are gaining positive traction. What are their ingredients for success?While the mix of ingredients differs from one community to the next, a top five list has emerged from the Richmond Fed's engagement with rural communities over the past several years: 1) regional collaboration; 2) strong local leadership; 3) telling a compelling story; 4) playing to strengths; and 5) taking a ...
Regional Matters

Journal Article
Definitions Matter: The Rural-Urban Dichotomy

District Digest article titled: Definitions Matter: The Rural-Urban Dichotomy
Econ Focus , Issue 3Q , Pages 28-31

Journal Article
Upfront: New from the Richmond Fed’s Regional Matters blog

Roll up of several Regional Matters Blog Posts
Econ Focus , Volume 23 , Issue 3Q , Pages 3

Journal Article
Upfront: New from the Richmond Fed’s Regional Matters blog

Econ Focus , Volume 23 , Issue 2Q , Pages 2

Briefing
Rental Affordability and COVID-19 in Rural New England

Although a shortage of affordable rental housing is often framed as an urban-area issue, rural communities also suffer from this problem. On average, rural and urban renters spend similar shares of their income on rent and have comparable rates of housing-cost burden. Years of slow income growth and skyrocketing rents, particularly during the 2000–2010 period, have eroded slack in household budgets that may have gone toward other expenses or toward savings. The coronavirus pandemic likely has exacerbated affordability problems by putting many rural residents out of work. The share of jobs ...
New England Public Policy Center Regional Brief , Paper 2021-1

Journal Article
District Digest: Community Colleges as Anchor Institutions in Rural Areas

The Fifth Federal Reserve District — comprising Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, most of West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. — is home to 122 public two-year institutions that have a wide range of both traditional academic and technical programs. More than half of these community colleges are located in rural counties. The 66 rural community colleges, like the private and public four-year institutions of higher education in rural areas, play an anchor institution role in their communities. But this role is not always accounted for in the formulas that federal, state, ...
Econ Focus , Volume 23 , Issue 3Q , Pages 26-30

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