Geographic Mobility

Overview

There were 311.6 million people in the United States in 2011, up less than 1 percent from the population of 308.7 million reported in the 2010 U.S. Census. The Hispanic population of the United States totaled 52.0 million as of July, 2011, making people of Hispanic origin the nation's largest ethnic or racial minority, accounting for 16.7 percent of the nation's total population, according to the U.S. Census.

Geographic Mobility

The percentage of people who changed residences dropped from 12.5 percent in 2010 to 11.6 percent in 2011, the lowest recorded rate since the U.S. Census Bureau began collecting these data in 1948. The rate, which was 20.2 percent in 1985, declined to a then-record low of 11.9 percent in 2008 before rising to 12.5 percent in 2009.

GENERAL MOBILITY, 2006-2011

(millions)

Mobility
period
Total
population (1)
Movers Moving rate
(percent)
2006-2007 293 39 13.2%
2007-2008 295 35 11.9
2008-2009 297 37 12.5
2009-2010 300 38 12.5
2010-2011 302 35 11.6

(1) People age 1 year old and older.   
   
Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau.

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  • The majority of people who moved in 2011 relocated for housing-related reasons such as for a better or newer home or safer neighborhood (40.7 percent), for less expensive housing (21.3 percent) and foreclosure (2.4 percent).

MOBILITY BY REGION, 2009-2011

(millions)

  2010-2011 Moving rate (percent) Percent of U.S. movers
Region Total population (1) Movers 2009-2010 2010-2011 2010-2011
Northeast 54,179 4,395 8.3% 8.1% 12.5%
South 111,651 13,751 13.6 12.3 39.2
Midwest 65,257 7,315 11.8 11.2 20.9
West 70,918 9,614 14.7 13.6 27.4
Total 302,005 35,075 12.5% 11.6% 100.0%

(1) People age 1 year old and older.

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau.

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PERCENT OF PEOPLE WHO LIVED IN A DIFFERENT STATE ONE YEAR AGO, 2011 (1)

State Percent Rank (2) State Percent Rank (2)
Alabama 2.5% 33 Montana 3.4% 12
Alaska 5.1 3 Nebraska 2.9 21
Arizona 3.5 10 Nevada 4.1 6
Arkansas 2.4 35 New Hampshire 2.8 23
California 1.3 51 New Jersey 1.7 46
Colorado 4.0 7 New Mexico 3.0 19
Connecticut 2.1 40 New York 1.5 49
Delaware 3.9 8 North Carolina 2.8 23
D.C. 7.9 1 North Dakota 4.8 4
Florida 2.8 23 Ohio 1.7 46
Georgia 2.8 23 Oklahoma 2.9 21
Hawaii 4.3 5 Oregon 3.3 14
Idaho 3.9 8 Pennsylvania 1.9 44
Illinois 1.7 46 Rhode Island 2.6 30
Indiana 2.0 42 South Carolina 3.5 10
Iowa 2.3 36 South Dakota 3.4 12
Kansas 3.0 19 Tennessee 2.7 28
Kentucky 2.6 30 Texas 2.1 40
Louisiana 2.2 38 Utah 3.1 17
Maine 2.6 30 Vermont 3.3 14
Maryland 2.7 28 Virginia 3.2 16
Massachusetts 2.2 38 Washington 3.1 17
Michigan 1.4 50 West Virginia 2.8 23
Minnesota 1.9 44 Wisconsin 2.0 42
Mississippi 2.3 36 Wyoming 5.5 2
Missouri 2.5 33 United States 2.3%  

(1) People age 1 year old and older.
(2) States with the same percentages receive the same rank.

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, American Community Survey.

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U.S. MIGRATION, BY PLACE OF ORIGIN, 2011

  Percent of U.S. population who are foreign born  Percent of foreign born population who were born in
  Percent Rank (1) Latin
America
Asia Europe Other
Alabama 3.4% 43 54.9% 26.7% 11.8% 6.6%
Alaska 7.1 25 16.1 52.0 21.1 10.8
Arizona 13.4 13 65.3 17.8 10.1 6.8
Arkansas 4.4 37 64.4 21.2 7.3 7.1
California 27.0 1 53.4 36.6 6.5 3.5
Colorado 9.7 19 55.9 21.6 13.7 8.8
Connecticut 13.4 13 41.0 23.3 27.6 8.1
Delaware 8.4 21 41.1 30.0 15.2 13.7
D.C. 13.5 11 44.9 18.8 20.3 16.0
Florida 19.4 4 75.0 10.0 10.4 4.6
Georgia 9.6 20 54.0 26.8 8.9 10.3
Hawaii 17.9 6 4.4 78.6 5.0 12.0
Idaho 6.0 29 58.6 19.5 13.9 8.0
Illinois 14.0 9 47.6 27.4 20.8 4.2
Indiana 4.7 34 48.1 29.4 14.4 8.1
Iowa 4.4 37 39.9 33.6 15.7 10.8
Kansas 6.9 26 54.9 30.0 7.5 7.6
Kentucky 3.2 44 38.4 32.9 15.4 13.3
Louisiana 3.8 42 52.5 32.1 10.1 5.3
Maine 3.2 44 9.3 26.1 24.0 40.6
Maryland 13.9 10 40.2 32.4 10.4 17.0
Massachusetts 14.9 8 35.7 29.3 23.3 11.7
Michigan 6.1 28 18.5 46.1 24.1 11.3
Minnesota 7.3 23 28.1 35.8 11.8 24.3
Mississippi 2.2 49 53.3 31.0 9.6 6.1
Missouri 4.0 39 30.8 36.0 22.1 11.1
Montana 2.0 50 10.5 24.3 31.5 33.7
Nebraska 6.3 27 57.0 27.0 7.6 8.4
Nevada 19.2 5 58.9 28.1 8.3 4.7
New Hampshire 5.6 31 20.3 34.8 25.8 19.1
New Jersey 21.5 3 46.1 31.3 17.1 5.5
New Mexico 10.1 17 79.5 10.1 7.7 2.7
New York 22.2 2 49.2 27.2 18.0 5.6
North Carolina 7.3 23 58.1 22.6 11.1 8.2
North Dakota 2.4 48 8.3 43.7 16.0 32.0
Ohio 4.0 39 20.6 38.3 25.2 15.9
Oklahoma 5.5 32 59.3 25.4 8.3 7.0
Oregon 9.8 18 46.8 29.4 15.0 8.8
Pennsylvania 5.9 30 29.5 37.5 24.1 8.9
Rhode Island 13.5 11 46.0 17.4 23.2 13.4
South Carolina 4.7 34 53.7 22.2 18.3 5.8
South Dakota 2.7 47 33.8 29.1 15.0 22.1
Tennessee 4.8 33 47.6 27.0 12.7 12.7
Texas 16.4 7 72.2 18.5 4.5 4.8
Utah 8.4 21 61.5 16.7 11.5 10.3
Vermont 3.9 41 12.3 25.6 30.3 31.8
Virginia 11.1 16 36.4 40.7 11.4 11.5
Washington 13.3 15 30.7 39.8 17.2 12.3
West Virginia 1.3 51 22.6 41.7 24.4 11.3
Wisconsin 4.7 34 39.4 32.4 19.9 8.3
Wyoming 3.2 44 62.1 17.1 11.9 8.9
United States 13.0%   52.6% 28.6% 12.1% 6.7%

(1) States with the same percentage receive the same rank.

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, American Community Survey.

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  • In 2011, 13.0 percent of the U.S. population was born outside the United States, with more than half of those immigrants born in Latin America.
  • The percentage of the population that speaks Spanish at home ranges from 13 percent nationally to almost 30 percent in Texas, California and New Mexico.
  • The Hispanic population increased by 1.3 million from 2010 to 2011. The increase in Hispanic population was more than half of the 2.3 million added to the nation's population during this period.
  • In 2011, 16.7 percent of the population were of Hispanic or Latino origin, up from 13 percent in 2000 and 16.0 percent in 2010.

FASTEST GROWING METROPOLITAN STATISTICAL AREAS, 2010-2011

Rank Metropolitan statistical area Population growth
1 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 154,774
2 Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX 139,699
3 Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 121,911
4 New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-PA 118,791
5 Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, CA 115,964
6 Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL 105,490
7 Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA 90,345
8 Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA 80,146
9 Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale, AZ 70,349
10 Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos, TX 67,230

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau.

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