Detroit— Michigan’s population is slowly rebounding, but millionaires may not be sticking around for the state’s revival.
Despite encouraging economic trends and a booming stock market, the state had 10,000 fewer millionaire households in 2013 than 2012, the Phoenix Global Wealth Monitor estimated in a report released this week.
The affluent are typically better insulated from economic downturns, but they can only absorb so much, said David Thompson, who oversees the report.
“Michigan has definitely taken a hit,” said Thompson, who produces the report for Phoenix Marketing International in New York. “The economic circumstances in the state will always eventually have an impact on the number of wealthy households.”
The survey of savings and investments — which doesn’t include traditional pensions or real estate — estimates there are 6.1 million millionaires nationwide. Michigan was home to 170,000 of them last year, down from 180,000 the year before.
The state’s per-capita rank fell to 37th from 27th over that time. That’s a far cry from its heyday in 2007, when Michigan ranked 14th and had 214,000 households with $1 million or more in investable assets, the Phoenix Marketing Group found.
Overall, California had the most millionaires, about 778,000, while Maryland had the most per capita, 7.7 percent, followed by New Jersey (243,000; 7.5 percent), Connecticut (101,000; 7.3 percent) and Hawaii (34,000; 7.2 percent).
In Birmingham, financial adviser William Messner has noticed clients leaving the state.
But as the wealthy retire in Metro Detroit, they’re frequently moving to states such as Florida that don’t tax incomes or pensions, he said. “We’re the only state to lose population over the past 10 years, so the (loss) seems credible,” said Messner of Graystone Consulting. “Most of our clients now are Florida-based.”
Across the state, Andrea Crossman is attracting a different sort of buyer of summer homes along Lake Michigan that start at $1.2 million.
“A big part of our clientele has always been people from Chicago, but now it’s also people from places like Texas,” said Crossman, a Holland real estate agent who specializes in luxury homes.
The report’s estimates come from data from the U.S. Census, Federal Reserve and the Nielsen Co. polling firm.
Richard Studley, president of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, said the overall findings don’t square with population gains, increases to the state’s per capita income and a host of other statistics showing Michigan has emerged from its 10-year funk.