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Are Demographics in the US Changing?



Are Demographics in the US Changing


Demographics in the US are changing. Trends include:

  • A continued decrease in geographical mobility.
  • An unprecedented stagnation in population growth.
  • More pronounced population aging.
  • Increasing ethnic and racial diversity among young groups like Gen Z, who now make up a majority of the US population.

Also, the size of the white population has decreased for the first time. In the future, immigration will play a critical role in population growth.

A departure from historical tradition

The US was among the fastest-growing countries in the industrialized world after 1950. Among the causes were increasing immigration in the 90s and 80s and the baby boom after World War II. Fast forward decades later, and the country recorded the lowest decade-long growth in history, according to the 2020 Census.

The annual population growth rate was just 0.35% between July 1, 2019, and July 1, 2020, the lowest in over a century.

The number of people aged 65 and over in America is expected to almost double in size in the decades to come, from 49 to 95 million between 2016 and 2060.

Ethnic changes

In the decades to come, the non-Hispanic white population is expected to decline even though other segments of the population will keep growing. It will drop from 199 to 179 million from 2020 to 2060. This drop is driven by a rising number of old-age-related deaths and falling birth rates.

To compare, the white population, without considering Hispanic origin, is predicted to grow from 253 million to 275 million in the same four decades.

The most rapidly growing ethnic or racial groups in the next few decades will consist of mixed-race people, followed by Asians and Hispanics. This trend is reflected in the growing popularity of certain Hispanic-origin names. For instance, the Rivera last name was the 59th most popular in 2000, but by 2010, it had gone up to no. 46.

For mixed-race and Hispanic people, elevated growth rates are mainly due to high natural increase rates considering these groups are relatively young. High international immigration is the driving force behind the growth of Asian groups.


The US will face a demographic turning point in 2030. From that year on, it is projected that all members of the Boomer generation will be 65 or older. As a result, the older population will increase, and 20% of Americans will be at retirement age.

In 2034, statisticians predict there will be more older adults than children for the first time in US history. In 2030, immigration is expected to overtake natural increase (having fewer deaths than births) as the leading cause of population growth in the US. Natural growth will decelerate as the number of deaths increases substantially.

Due to this, the natural increase will take a back seat to net international migration, although demographic experts expect migration levels to remain relatively flat. These three demographic occurrences will render the 2030s a decade of transformation for the country’s population.

Continued growth regardless

After 2030, the US population is expected to become more ethnically and racially diverse, to age substantially, and to grow slowly.

Although population growth will decelerate, especially after 2030, the US population will pass 400 million in 2058, projected to grow by 79 million people by that time. This tendency sets the US apart from other developed countries with contracting or barely increasing populations.

Predictions of the older adult population

Almost 25% of Americans will be in the older adult category by 2060. Experts predict the number of deaths will increase substantially, but around 2060, the natural population growth is projected to be around 500,000. International migration is projected to add another 1.1 million to the population.

These factors combined will lead to very slow natural population growth, which is why international migration will be the leading cause of population growth, even though migration levels are expected to be relatively flat.


Changing demographics is neither a good nor a bad thing. It is simply a reflection of how society is changing and developing.

SEE ALSO: 5 Life-Changing Benefits of Knowing Your Family History and How to Discover It

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