NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


February 13, 2008

America could come to resemble New York City by 2050, when one in five residents will have been born in another country if immigration flows hold at the current rate, according to a new report from the Pew Hispanic Center.

Other findings:

  • America is on a path to break immigration records set in 1890 and 1910, when immigrants accounted for 14 percent of the American population.
  • The rate of immigration dropped sharply in the 1930s and 1940s after the Immigration Act of 1924 was passed, and spiked again in the 1990s.
  • By 2025, the current immigration boom could outstrip past increases, as immigrants are projected to total 15 percent of the population; by 2050, the number could be nearly 20 percent.


  • Some 19 percent of Americans will be immigrants by 2050, compared with 12 percent today.
  • Latinos will make up almost a third of the nation's population, compared with 14 percent now.
  • The African-American population will grow by more than 50 percent, but will see its share of the population edge up only slightly, to a little more than 13 percent.

Overall, as the total population rises to 438 million in the next four decades, immigrants and their children will likely be responsible for 82 percent of the growth as the native population ages and its birth rate declines, say study authors Jeffrey Passel and D'Vera Cohn, who based their findings on past and current trends.

Source: Sarah Garland, "Study Sees Non-Hispanic Whites Shrinking to Minority Status in U.S.," New York Sun, February 12, 2008.


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