Population Stagnation

Dec. 21, 2021 – According to Ken Simonsen, chief economist at Associated General Contractors, U.S. population growth slowed between July 1, 2020 and July 1, 2021 to “0.1%, the lowest rate since the nation’s founding,” the Census Bureau reported. Population changes over time are a major contributor to demand for numerous types of construction, funding for public construction, and supply of potential construction workers. “The slow rate of growth can be attributed to decreased net international migration, decreased fertility, and increased mortality due in part to the COVID-19 pandemic,” but also to rising numbers of very old people and more deaths of younger adults from suicide and drug overdoses. Population increased in 33 states and decreased in D.C. and 17 states, “a historically large number of states to lose population.” Idaho grew the fastest of any state, 2.9%, as it added 53,151 residents, 90% from other states. Population grew by 1.7% in Utah (46,291) and Montana (18,078) and 1.4% in Arizona (98,330). Texas had the largest numerical increase (310,288 or 1.1%, 7th in percentage growth), followed by Florida (211,196; 1.0%, 8th), Arizona, and North Carolina (93,985; 0.9%, 11th). D.C. had the steepest percentage loss (-2.9%, -20,043), followed by New York (-1.6%, -319,020), Illinois (-0.9%, -113,776), Hawaii (-0.7%, -10,358), and California (-0.7%, -261,902). New York had the largest numerical decrease, followed by California and Illinois. State gains and losses were driven primarily by state-to-state migration, as all states had net international immigration. The largest net domestic migration gains were in Florida (220,890), Texas (170,307) and Arizona (93,026). The largest migration to other states occurred in California (-367,299), New York (-352,185), and Illinois (-122,460).

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