Unfinished Business

Facts About the Growing Diversity of the U.S. Population in 2012

The U.S. Census Bureau has fresh numbers detailing the continued diversification of the U.S. population. As the percentage of Whites in the U.S. continues to decline, minority populations are increasing, with Asians showing the fastest rate of population growth in 2012 at 2.9%, for an increase of 530,000 to 18.9 million. The Bureau attributes most of this growth to international immigration into the U.S.

The Hispanic population in the U.S. increased by 2.2 percent, or more than 1.1 million, to just over 53 million in 2012 – with most of the growth attributed to births within the United States.

The Black or African-American population increased by 1.3% to to 44.5 million.

Overall, the minority population in the U.S  was up  by 1.9 percent to 116 million, representing 37 percent, of the total population in July 2012.  Non-Hispanic Whites make up 63 percent of the U.S.; Hispanics, 17 percent; Blacks, 12.3 percent; Asians, 5 percent; and multiracial Americans, 2.4 percent. By contrast, in 2000, non-Hispanic Whites were 75.1 percent of the U.S. population.

The Census Bureau also found that in 2012, White deaths outnumbered births for the first time in more than 100 years.

Additional facts from the Census Bureau latest report:

Hispanics

  • California had the largest Hispanic population of any state on July 1, 2012 (14.5 million), as well as the largest numeric increase within the Hispanic population since July 1, 2011 (232,000). New Mexico had the highest percentage of Hispanics at 47.0 percent.
  • Los Angeles County had the largest Hispanic population of any county (4.8 million) in 2012 and the largest numeric increase since 2011 (55,000). Starr County — on the Mexican border in Texas — had the highest share of Hispanics (95.6 percent).

Blacks

  • New York had the largest black or African-American population of any state or equivalent as of July 1, 2012 (3.7 million); Texas had the largest numeric increase since 2011 (87,000). The District of Columbia had the highest percentage of blacks
    (51.6 percent), followed by Mississippi (38.0 percent).
  • Cook, Ill. (Chicago) had the largest black or African-American population of any county in 2012 (1.3 million), and Harris, Texas (Houston) had the largest numeric increase since 2011 (20,000). Holmes, Miss., was the county with the highest percentage of blacks or African-Americans in the nation (83.1 percent).

Asians

  • California had both the largest Asian population of any state (6.0 million) in July 2012 and the largest numeric increase of Asians since July 1, 2011 (136,000). Hawaii is our nation’s only majority-Asian state, with people of this group comprising 56.9 percent of the total population.
  • Los Angeles had the largest Asian population of any county (1.6 million) in 2012 and the largest numeric increase (25,000) since 2011. At 60.9 percent, Honolulu County had the highest percentage of Asians in the nation.

American Indians and Alaska Natives

  • California had the largest American Indian and Alaska Native population of any state in 2012 (1,057,000) and the largest numeric increase since 2011 (13,000). Alaska had the highest percentage (19.5 percent).
  • Los Angeles County had the largest American Indian and Alaska Native population of any county in 2012 (232,000), and Maricopa, Ariz., the largest numeric increase (4,000) since 2011. Shannon County, S.D. — on the Nebraska border and located entirely within the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation — had the highest percentage (93.5 percent).

Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders

  • Hawaii had the largest population of Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders of any state (364,000) in 2012. California had the largest numeric increase since 2011 (6,000). Hawaii had the highest percentage (26.2 percent).
  • Honolulu had the largest population of Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders of any county (238,000) in 2012. Los Angeles County had the largest numeric increase since 2011 (1,100). Hawaii County had the highest percentage (34.3 percent).

Non-Hispanic White Alone

  • California had the largest non-Hispanic white alone population of any state in 2012 (15.0 million). Texas had the largest numeric increase in this population group since 2011 (78,000). Maine had the highest percentage of the non-Hispanic white population (94.1 percent).
  • Los Angeles had the largest non-Hispanic white alone population of any county (2.7 million) in 2012. Maricopa County, Ariz., had the largest numeric increase in this population since 2011 (24,000). Leslie County, Ky., comprised the highest percentage (98.4 percent) of non-Hispanic whites.

Minorities

  • Five states or equivalents were “majority-minority” in 2012: Hawaii (77.2 percent minority), the District of Columbia (64.5 percent), California (60.6 percent), New Mexico (60.2 percent) and Texas (55.5 percent).
  • Maverick, Texas, had the largest share (96.8 percent) of its population in minority groups of any county, followed by Webb, Texas (96.4 percent) and Starr, Texas (96.1 percent).

 


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