Births, not immigration, account for most of Hispanic growth in last decade
Mexican-American women accounted for 16% of the nation’s births in 2008.
July 14th, 2011
12:01 PM ET

Births, not immigration, account for most of Hispanic growth in last decade

Births have overtaken immigration as the driving force behind the growth of the Mexican-American population in the United States in the past decade, according to a report released Thursday by the Pew Hispanic Center.

The same can be said for the entire Hispanic population of the United States, which grew from 35.3 million in 2000 to 50.5 million in 2010, accounting for 16.3% of the U.S. population, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. About 58% of that growth resulted from births rather than the arrival of new immigrants, the report says.

The trend is most evident among Mexican-Americans, whose numbers grew by 7.2 million as a result of births and 4.2 million from new immigrant arrivals in the past decade, reversing trends from the previous two decades, when the number of new immigrants matched or exceeded the number of births, the report says.

Mexican-Americans are the nation's largest Hispanic group,  at around 31.8 million, or 63% of the U.S. Hispanic population and 10% of the total U.S. population.

In the Pew report, the term Mexican-American applies to people of Mexican origin, regardless of immigration status. The study noted that in 2010, 52% of people of Mexican origin were in the U.S. illegally, and that 68% of births to undocumented aliens were to Mexican nationals.

What's behind the change?

Mexican-Americans are more likely than U.S.-born Americans to be in their prime child-bearing years, and they also have higher fertility rates, the report says. Another significant factor is a steep decline in Mexican immigration to the United States in recent years.

Hispanic births accounted for 25% of the nation’s newborns in 2008, the report says, citing statistics from the Centers for Disease Control. U.S. births are also disproportionately Mexican-American. While 10% of the nation’s population in 2008 was Mexican-American, 16% of the nation’s births were to Mexican-American mothers.

White children in the minority in 10 states

Meanwhile, the number of new immigrants arriving from Mexico fell by 60% between 2006 and 2010 because of declining job opportunities in the U.S., increased border enforcement and economic growth in Mexico, the report says, citing a previous Pew Hispanic Center study of Mexican immigration trends.

Age and fertility explain the high share of births among Mexican-Americans, the report says. On average, Mexican-Americans are younger than other major racial and ethnic groups, with a median age of 25, compared with 30 for non-Mexican-origin Hispanics and 41 for whites.

Mexican-American women also have more children than their counterparts in other racial and Hispanic origin groups. The typical Mexican-American woman between 40 and 44 has given birth to 2.5 children, compared with 2.3 children for the typical same-aged Hispanic woman and 1.8 children for the typical same-aged white woman, according to Pew Hispanic Center tabulations from the 2006 to 2010 June Fertility Supplements of the U.S. Current Population Survey.

The Hispanic share of the population is projected to rise from 16.3% in 2010 to 29% by the middle of this century, with the bulk of the future increase driven by births rather than the arrival of new immigrants, the report says.

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Filed under: Census
soundoff (1,115 Responses)
  1. wendy5

    no s hit dick tracy; thats how most populations grow; how stupid; now are they legal or illegal go find your squad car and get back to us

    July 14, 2011 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Logan9773

    What do you expect? They come here illegally, then breed like roaches.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elizabeth

      Hahahah I laugh at the ignorance of these people!...hispanics DO believe that education is important, if parents are low working class people ..at least their children are being taught that education is important! "We" don't care for drugs or any other types of crap...so Meth labs, teen moms, H.S. drop outs and pot heads seem to be helping to bring their own country down...stop hating idiots!

      July 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  3. phoenix

    most hispanics are poor and they love poverty[[more catholic upbringing]

    July 14, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
  4. jefffbo

    How can hispanic growth be due to births ? I dont get it.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jose Hernandez

    Man I'm hispanic and I despise other hispanics who take advantage of this country's generosity go back to Mexico!

    July 14, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • juan

      I'm mexican american also, and while there are those who take advantage of the system, latinos are not the only ones. My parents came here and worked their butts off until they became citizens and were able to retire. I went to school and graduated, now I'm fortunate to have a good job. But I get what you are saying, it does make me angry to see people go get welfare driving a nice car on rims.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
  6. cgouyonnet

    The statistics coming from Mexico are truly frightening. The Mexican department of Education admits that 12 million kids 15 and under cannot read and write. 8 million young mexicans 18-24 dont go to school and have never held a job in their lives. The educational system in Mexico is dead last in the world. In the meantime, every year there are 2 million newborns in Mexico. the population in Mexico has exploded from 12 milliion during the us invasion in1847 to 112 million today. Mexico imports 80 percent of all the food it consumes. 45 million mexicans live under extreme poverty. These are the facts. NAFTA didnt change anything. It actually has made Mexico poorer.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Comonsns

      This country will be destoyed because only the uneducated, poor, dont-wanna-speak-English Mexicans are coming to america......ladies and gentleman, WE ARE DOOMED!!!

      July 14, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  7. MrHelobious

    Yes, all of us mexicans are secretly plotting to overtake this country in the name of "Aztlan". Give me a break, people. The longer we stay here, the more we assimilate into american culture. The city where I live, San Antonio, is a perfect example of mexican and american cultures successfully blending together.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  8. ALKP

    Anchor babies! the second they cross the Rio Grande they go straight to the hospital for free services and give birth without paying a penny for the expenses. We pay for all of those services. Then people wonder how come states have no money.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrific -- glad we have the anchor baby program....

      Whew! I am sooooooooo glad that Maria and Conchita are able to be in America to latch onto the Americano freebie delivery program. Millions (and MILLIONS) of illegal Mexican are in Amerika - the land of the free emergency room care for your baby's cough - so that they can pooch out as many Chicanos as possible.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Mkoua

    No racism in here...

    July 14, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Burbank

    What a bunch of BUNK!!!!! How about all the anchor babies the illegals drop like animals in heat? Just drive through any neighborhood taken over by illegals and you will see pregnant women going down the street with one or two in the stroller and another 2-3 hanging on to their clothes and these women aren't even out of their 20's yet! What a load of CRA*!

    They all, legal and illegal need to be held accountable for this irresponsibility and the burden they put on welfare and the world's ecology too. If they can't afford them they have no business having them and then foisting the burden on us. Go make the Pope pay for it. They are nothing but a bunch of greedy businessmen in dresses, forget about the "holy" cra*! That's a bunch of bunk too!

    July 14, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • thefrumepter

      Newsflash, go to Appalachia and see how many folks are on welfare?
      Oh, and their skin is colored just like you (white is such a misnomer, red when you are made, green when you are sick, and you pay to have my color skin...DA)

      July 14, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  11. native pride

    all of you can go to hell!!
    my people are the real owners of this land.
    ALL you are the true immigrants.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Arpaio

      Yeah right. I am sure enjoy cashing those casino royalty checks?

      July 14, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • native pride

      again we were here first.
      can you say that?

      July 14, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Just wondering

      You believe in hell ? I though that was the pale faced forked tounge man's invention.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • cgouyonnet

      you are just a sore loser. get off your a** and contribute to our society. This land was never Mexico's Mexico lost it because of their own stupidity and laziness. End of story. Move on.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ok

      Let me guess, related to a cherokee princess like 90% of the other people claiming to be of the people? Except for a few tribes, native americans allowed outsiders providing they intigrated with society. Dont speak out of ignorance.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  12. texas gun owner

    I hope Obamo doesn't come up with a budget plan so u illegals DON'T get a welfare check and see what's its like to have your money taken from you because each check you get you just robbed someone WHO WORKS HARD who has to provide for THERE OWN FAMILY. I don't mind helping people with disibilities at all, but I don't like that we have to support people who are TOO DAMN LAZY TO GET A JOB

    July 14, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • BBP09

      People who are illegal cannot get welfare checks. In fact even when you are here legally unless it is through special provisions such as VAWA or a U or T-visa, you have to wait to contribute to the system before being able to receive benefits such as welfare.

      July 14, 2011 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
  13. steve

    they breed like rats on american taxpayer $'s
    end of story!

    July 14, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Burbank

      I agree with the below, sterilization to get welfare. Birth control will become a sacrament!

      July 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  14. MK

    Sterilization should be mandatory to pick up a welfare check. The problem would be fixed in a generation or two.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Black American Dream

    I don’t see the problem with Mexicans here in America. They are willing to work jobs that no one else wants to. Get over it and embrace it, because they are the fastest growing demographic in this country.

    July 14, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • rrock

      Nobody wants the jobs because illegals have driven down the pay for manual labor. Poor Americans pay the price.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • larry

      You talking points were worn out decades ago. What don't you understand about breaking the law? Just because our politicians are bought off and look the other way does not change the fact that many of these Mexicans are criminals. Or should we say many of these criminals are Mexicans.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ok

      Unfortunately, most of the jobs that illegals take, citizens would take in a heartbeat. Especially in this economic climate, even with illegal labor driving down the wages.

      Easy fix, blackie, is to have these people immigrate legally. They will pay taxes and start caring about the illegals that suck money out of the economy.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
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