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. quagmire

    Look at the picture of the baby drinking milk that the mother bought with government welfare money.. I'm so glad the mexicans are here to destroy our country.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  2. eperez

    I agree, immigration is a problem. but our people have always been in the southwest, now that they are moving everywhere else people are nervous because we are different. if all you people including people of hispanic decent think that the Mexican people are going to be herded back to mexico like cattle there will be an uprising. We have always been here and will always be.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veronica

      It's not because you are's because you have no regard for over population and you bring your 3rd world trash with you.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • ketrout

      WE are NOT nervous, we want you to come here LEGALLY and NOT ILLEGALLY! Is this so hard for you to understand????

      The majority of the American people and the LEGAL IMMIGRANTS want to stop supporting you!

      If you come here LEGALLY and follow our laws, then we have no problems, but ILLEGALLY we want you arrested and deported back to your own country.

      I have one question, and that is why have you left you country instead of fighting for your rights there. I do not understand it.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • guest

      what do you mean "our people" maybe "your people" should quit crossing the border illegally and having kids to have an anchor.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • G

      Stop drilling hole, jumping fence, and swimming across and enter legally.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • DamianKnight

      Gotta agree with Ketrout.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • gsand

      Yes you will always be here, unfortunately. Cant you see the plague your people cause on this country? You should all be ashamed to be Mex-Am. You are looked down upon by every race, not just white folks! Why cant you guys see that no one wants you!

      July 14, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Ok boy....

    ....clearly has no idea what he's talking about.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • G

      He does not have any clue about emigration. He jumped the fence

      July 14, 2011 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
  4. ketrout

    All because our federal government DID NOT SECURE OUR MURDERS!!! Now the 20 million plus ILLEGAL ALIEN CRIMINALS are like rabbits and having babies to anchor them here in the US. AND GUESS WHAT AMERICA, WE THE TAXPAYERS PAID FOR THEM!

    This is why the majority of the American people want the federal government to ENFORCE our immigration laws and to secure our southern border NOW!!!!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Veronica

    It's not OK that they are breeding like rabbits and over populating this country. I see pregnant Mexican women (most likely illegal) everywhere with huge families of every size children. Go Home!!! We don't want to pay for you anymore!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • MayaNYC

      should hasidic woman go home too . BTW teh average birth rate in USA is 2.3 Mexican has 2.5 and the rest of hispanic has exactly the average.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  6. realnative

    Pro life!!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ramtough

    I'm African-American and the problem is not Mexican-Americans, the real problem is bigot-minded White folk.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • G

      The bad workman blames the tool

      July 14, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  8. robert mark

    Accept all your brothers and you will no longer be alienated from the grace of god and your own true self

    July 14, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • guest

      God doesn't alineate, but nice try.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • G

      God is very lazy and does not have to deal with this mess

      July 14, 2011 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  9. pmk1953

    As long as they pay taxes an I don't have to learn spanish, who cares any more.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      After all, by your post, it's obvious you still struggle with English. Good for you for knowing your limitations.

      July 15, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
  10. realnative

    White people are ignorant. Us natives didn't want u guys here. But u came & kept coming. Now you have to deal with Mexicans....LOL how does it feel??

    July 14, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • guest

      and you know how it feels? Because you were alive during the trail of tears right.

      Pot meet kettle.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • G

      Where is your green card? I mean Green card not the drivers license.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Overgrown

    Once the economy is booming again everyone will forget the illegals. Forget all the racist crap. You don't think about those things when you or your child needs a blood transfusion do you dipstick. We were all made from one blood. But there is one important thing you all are missing. The border must be enforced. The law must be enforced and not because the mexicans have finished picking my berries and building my pool. But the insane violence will hop the border and you will regret the bickering your losing time on. Get over it work together.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veronica

      How can the economy boom with the drain on our social services, health care, schools and housing by illegals?

      July 14, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Ramtough.... prolly on the gov't dole, too!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  13. realnative

    Veronica you go home!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veronica

      I was born here to American citizen parents who are here LEGALLY. My rights come before leaching third world trash!

      July 14, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  14. the_dude

    Just what we need here in the USA!More uneducated retards whose sole purpose min life is to fill out government request forms for section 8 and welfare.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Ali999

    So, we're supposed to feel better that illegal aliens are giving birth at our expense to US-citizen children anchor babies who they will then wave and use to claim that they shouldn't be deported because they're parents? We're supposed to be glad at the creation of a new underclass of poor citizens who will be heavy users of social services and pay little in taxes?

    July 14, 2011 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
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