Hispanic Natural Increase: A Growing Source of Population Change in Urban and Rural America

Kenneth M. Johnson, University of New Hampshire

We use post-2000 Census Bureau estimates and race/ethnic specific birth and death data to highlight the accelerating role of natural increase as an engine of Hispanic population growth in America. Our findings document the rapid rise in the Hispanic population since 1990 and we find that these substantial Hispanic population gains were fueled increasingly by natural increase. Between 2000 and 2005, most of the Hispanic population increase came from natural increase rather than migration, both in metro and nonmetro areas. More than 58 percent of the nonmetro Hispanic increase and 55 percent of the metro Hispanic population gain was fueled by natural increase Current trends suggest that the ascendancy of the Hispanic population is likely to continue, whether restrictive immigration legislation is enacted or not. The growth of the Hispanic population, fueled increasingly by natural increase, has taken on a demographic momentum of its own.

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Presented in Poster Session 3