The fall brings not only colorful foliage and pumpkin pies but also much-awaited data from the US Census Bureau, providing a treasure trove of figures that quantify and help explain the lives of people living in this country, whether native or foreign born. This month, we are pleased to update three of our tools with just-released data from the 2008 American Community Survey.
Did you know:
* There were 37,960,935 foreign born in the United States — only slightly lower than the 38,059,694 reported in 2007. This is a dramatic departure from previous years when the number of immigrants in the United States increased by about one million persons per year.
* The share of immigrants in the total population also dropped slightly — from 12.6 percent in 2007 to 12.5 percent in 2008.
* Though immigrants in recent years have fanned out beyond the traditional gateway states, two out of every three immigrants lived in six states — California, New York, Texas, Florida, Illinois, and New Jersey — in 2008. In 1990, those same states accounted for 72.9 percent of all immigrants residing in the United States.
* North Carolina, Georgia, Nevada, and Arkansas were among 15 states that experienced more than 200 percent growth of their immigrant population between 1990 and 2008.
Check out our State Rankings Tables and the map of States with the Largest and Fastest-Growing Immigrant Populations that capture changes in the size of the immigrant population at the national and state levels between 1990 and 2008.
* In 2008, two in three immigrants (or 24.9 million) lived in just 20 metropolitan areas. There were 5.3 million immigrants in the New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-PA metro area and 4.4 million immigrants in the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, CA metro area. Together, these two metropolitan areas accounted for one quarter of all immigrants in the United States.
Check out our updated map showing the State Proportion of the Immigrant Population and Metropolitan Areas with 400,000 Immigrants or More to find out in which metropolitan areas nearly two in three immigrants lived in 2008.
* California was home to 37.3 percent of the 11.4 million Mexican immigrants living in the United States in 2008, followed by Texas, which accounted for 21 percent. About 1.8 million Mexican immigrants lived in one metropolitan area: Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, CA.
Check out our updated map showing the State Proportion of the Mexican Immigrant Population and Metropolitan Areas with 150,000 Mexican Immigrants or More to find out where else Mexican immigrants are concentrated. We also have maps showing other top origin groups Filipino, Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Salvadorean, and Korean born. There were at least 1 million immigrants from each of these six countries residing in the United States in 2008.
The pie chart Ten Source Countries with the Largest Populations: 2008 shows the top ten countries of origin and the chart Foreign-Born Population by Region of Birth: 1960 to 2008 displays the change over time by world region.
* The 16.3 million children of immigrants — both foreign and US born — accounted for nearly one in four children under age 18 in the United States in 2008. The share of children of immigrants among all children was double the national average (23.2 percent) in a traditional immigrant state California (49.6 percent) and 1.6 times higher in a new-growth state Nevada (37 percent). The Children Age 17 and under in Immigrant and Native Families by State table shows the change in size and share of children of immigrants in the nation and by state between 1990 and 2008.
* While immigrants accounted for 12.5 percent of the entire US population, they represented 15.7 percent (or 24.5 million) of the 156.2 million adults engaged in the civilian labor force in 2008. Since 1980 the share of immigrants in the US civilian labor force has more than doubled (from 6.7 percent to 15.7 percent).
Use our chart Foreign Born as a Percentage of the Total Population and of the Civilian Labor Force, 1970 to 2008 to display the changes over time. Click on “Download data as Excel file” to download the state-level data to create your own charts.
[Source: Migration Information Source–October 28, 2009]