The current recession has slowed both the flow of internal migration and the influx of immigrants to the U.S. The period of 2007-2009 experienced the lowest rates of annual mobility since the Census Bureau began collecting migration statistics in 1947-48.
The 2000-2006 and 2006-2009 periods represent two distinct migration epochs for metropolitan America. Migration magnets in Florida, the Intermountain West, and inland California during the first half of the decade saw inflows plummet post-crash, while metro areas in Texas and the Southeast with more diversified economies held steady. Large metro areas that had previously "exported" large numbers of residents to other parts of the country saw out-migration slow considerably toward the end of the decade. (p. 37) [...] In 2007-2008, only 11.9 percent of Americans changed residence, and this rose to just 12.5 percent in 2008-2009. Together, these are the lowest rates of annual mobility since the Census Bureau began collecting migration statistics in 1947-1948. (p. 39) [...] High levels of immigration in the 2000s increased the foreign-born population from 31 million to 38 million as of 2008. Despite that increase, the pace of growth in this decade was slower than the rapid immigrant population growth of the 1990s. The steep downturn in the economy that began in late 2007 has had an impact on migration worldwide, and immigration to the United States appeared to have slowed by 2008. (p. 65)
Population growth has slowed in U.S. retirement destinations, despite the large cohort of baby boomers who have begun to reach retirement age, according to new population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau. Counties that should be seeing a rising influx of retirees have experienced slower growth - or even population loss - since the onset of the recession in 2007. The population slowdown is most pronounced in retirement magnets in the Northeast, Midwest, and parts of recession-hit Florida.[...] Census Bureau data show that more nonretirement counties are holding on to their population now than they did from 2000 to 2007.
Pollard, K. & Mather, M. (2010, March). Slower growth of U.S. retirement destinations linked to economic downturn. [Population Reference Bureau]. Retrieved from http://www.prb.org/Articles/2010/censusdata.aspx
Suburbs are now home to a more diverse populations in terms of age, ethnicity, household size, and poverty status. By 2008 the number of poor living in suburbs exceeded the number of poor in primary cities by 1.5 million.
For the first time, a majority of all racial/ethnic groups in large metro areas live in the suburbs. (p.61) [...] Most growth in the senior population in years ahead will take place in the suburbs. (p.77) [Boomers] are contributing to a significant "graying" of suburbia, as now almost 40 percent of suburban residents are age 45 or older, up from 34 percent in 2000, and higher than their 35 percent share in primary cities. (p.85) [...] People living alone and non-married-couple families are the fastest-growing household types in suburbs. A majority of married-couple families of all races and ethnicities live in the suburbs today. But as their share of households declined to one-quarter or less in all types of suburbs, non-families became the most prominent suburban household type by 2008. (p. 91) [...] Suburbs are home to the fastest growing and largest poor population in the country. Between 1999 and 2008, the suburban poor population grew by 25 percent - almost five times the growth rate of the primary city poor - so that by 2008 suburbs were home to almost one-third of the country's poor population, and 1.5 million more poor than primary cities. While city and suburban poor residents generally resemble one another, slightly more of the suburban poor are high-school graduates, married, and white; blacks and Latinos make up a disproportionate share of the poor in both cities and suburbs. (p. 133)
The migration of people to suburban sunny locations is slowing greatly with the recession.
Unemployment and the housing meltdown are triggering an about-face in where Americans choose to live. Booming Sun Belt cities and exurban counties across the USA are not attracting as many people as they once did while older industrial centers that had lost residents for decades are losing fewer, according to Census population estimates out today [March 18, 2009]. "This is really a migration about-face," says William Frey, demographer at the Brookings Institution. "Places that have relied on migrants for their growth are now just puzzled because not nearly as many people are coming, and places that had been bleeding migrants" are getting a break.
MARCH 18, 2009, Fewer Leaving Urban Centers, Moving to Sunnier Places, by Haya El Nasser, USA Today, http://www.usatoday.com . [posted 4/17/2009]
Minority populations are growing faster than the white population; counties where minorities are the majority are sprinkled throughout the country.
White populations have declined in more than half of the USA's counties since 2000, helping fuel a rise in the number of communities where minorities are now the majority, an analysis of 2007 Census estimates released today shows. The data reflect how immigration, a population boom among Hispanics and the slowing growth of an aging population of whites are reshaping the nation's demographic landscape.... Minorities made up more than half the population in 302 of the nation's 3,141 counties last year. Most such areas in the early 1990s were centered in established metropolitan areas and border cities in the Southwest. Now, counties where minorities are a majority are popping up "all over the place," not just in areas where immigrants traditionally first settled, says William Frey, a Brookings Institution demographer. A continuing migration of African Americans to the South also is furthering this trend, he adds. Though whites are 66% of the population nationwide, "it's kind of a zero sum game. Hispanic and Asians are growing nationally and they can spread out," Frey says. Because the white population is growing very slowly, whites leaving many communities are not replaced by other whites. At the same time, the white population continues to grow rapidly in many Sun Belt counties.
AUGUST 7, 2008, Demographic Landscape Shifts Across United States, by Charisse Jones and Paul Overberg, USA Today, http://www.usatoday.com
Non-Hispanic whites will lose majority status in the U.S. population years before demographers previously predicted.
The number of minorities in the USA is growing so briskly that non-Hispanic whites will lose their majority status in 2042, years before demographers had previously projected, according to Census data released today [August 14, 2008].... The latest figures show that in 2050, non-Hispanic whites will have fallen to 46% of the population. The proportion of children under 18 who are minorities will be even higher: 62%, up from 44% today. Two in every five children will be Hispanic, and two in five will be non-Hispanic white. Other projections:
- The Hispanic population will nearly triple, from 46.7 million to 132.8 million in 2050, which would increase its share of the population from 15% to 30%. Blacks will increase from 14% to 15%, Asians from 5% to 9%.
- In 2050, one in five U.S. residents will be at least 65. The group over 85 is expected to more than triple from 5.4 million to 19 million.
AUGUST 14, 2008 America's Face Evolves, Blurs, Ages, by Paul Overberg and Emily Bazar, USA Today, http://www.usatoday.com [posted 11/6/2008]
The population shifts to the South and West continue: some of the largest Northern cities have lost half their population since the 1950s.
... of the 20 largest cities at mid-century, all but four have shrunk, some by a lot. Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and Buffalo, N.Y., have all lost more than half their population in the past half-century. Americans have been migrating south and west for decades in search of better job opportunities and warmer climates. They have also been moving to the suburbs and beyond, in search of bigger yards and houses, lower crime rates and better schools. In 1950, nearly a fifth of the population lived in the nation's 20 largest cities. In 2006, it was about one in 10. Many older cities are trying to reinvent themselves, relying on the universities, health centers and cultural attractions that have long been desirable, said William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank.
JUNE 28, 2007, U.S. Population Shifts South and West, CBS News, http://www.cbsnews.com.
About one in three U.S. residents in 2006 was a minority (total U.S. population: 303 million; total U.S. minority population: 100 million):
- Hispanics: largest minority - 44.3 million or 15% of the population, 2006.
- Blacks: 2nd largest minority - 40 million, 2006.
- Asians: 3rd largest minority - 15 million, 2006.
The nation's minority population reached 100.7 million, according to the national and state estimates by race, Hispanic origin, sex and age released today by the U.S. Census Bureau. A year ago, the minority population totaled 98.3 million. "About one in three U.S. residents is a minority," said Census Bureau Director Louis Kincannon. "To put this into perspective, there are more minorities in this country today than there were people in the United States in 1910. In fact, the minority population in the U.S. is larger than the total population of all but 11 countries." Hispanic remained the largest minority group, with 44.3 million on July 1, 2006 - 14.8 percent of the total population. Black was the second-largest minority group, totaling 40.2 million in 2006. They were followed by Asian (14.9 million), American Indian and Alaska Native (4.5 million), and Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander (1 million). The population of non-Hispanic whites who indicated no other race totaled 198.7 million in 2006.
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