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. Sandeep

    India has 13 times more people than mexico. Yet mexico gets 3x more LEGAL immigrant visas compared to India. How is this fair? Why give preference to latino latrine cleaners when there are highly skilled, English speaking, LEGAL immigrants from India waiting patiently for visa?

    NOT FAIR!!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • realnative

      India is not next door. Duh!

      July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Indian

      Becuase Indians take away jobs that Americans dont like to loose!!! Simple as that.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Me

      Look on a map fool!

      July 14, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Californian

      Indians are here illegally too. Have you forgotten about the arranged marriages with homeless so that you could get your visa. You are an IDIOT! Given the opportunity all of you will sneak in from Canada.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anne

      good point.

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

      the Department of Homeland security goes by the smell test, indians just smell worse than mexicans.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      You moron Mexicans don't need a visa. They just walk to USA

      July 14, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Report abuse |
  2. seeveearts

    Why are Mexican- Americans more fertile than American born people though??

    July 14, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • hawaiiduude

      because they use organic manure?

      July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • eafina

      If you have nothing to do, what will you do?

      July 14, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brent

      The ˈfertility rateˈ is a measure of the averaɡe number of children per woman not the actual fertility of women. ɪ don't beleive there is a way to measure the feritlity of a woman. We can qualitatively measure it; fertile, infertile, barren, etc.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lejaune

      Catholic church.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rachel

      Mexican-Americans are typically American born, duh! It's mix of culture but mostly religion, you have children because God blessed you with them, no matter how many. I know, it's crazy. My grandmother (who refused to set foot in the US) had 9, my mom had 6, I have 2 and that's enough for me.

      July 14, 2011 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      They have millions of sperm in their semen

      July 14, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • IHateStupidPeople

      Too much tequila and margaritas

      July 15, 2011 at 3:34 am | Report abuse |
  3. 0704 American

    First we penetrated your borders now we are going to penetrate your wife and daughters. 😀

    July 14, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • mogu


      July 14, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • eafina

      Only in your dreams. The process of Natural Selection always works. I have never seen wight bears together with frogs. Have you?

      July 14, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Me

      eafina: Can't say that I have ever seen a wight bear. Where do they normally live?

      July 14, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • eafina

      Me: White Bears live in Canada. My family is proud to be Canadians!!!

      July 14, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim in Texas

      Short, overweight, uneducated, and a day laborer. What a catch!

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


    July 14, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • cgouyonnet

      they should learn to read and write.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Me

      Yes, because certainly their religion is important to the rest of us.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ananymous

      We'll teach them how to read, write, etc. Then they will be Christian no more.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      So you suggest we go back to the Dark Ages? Have you seen what most of Latin America looks like economically and socially? Thank god I'm getting out of the the States.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ed Rooney

      OH MAN. That was priceless. "We will teach them to read and write, then they will be Christian no more." Perfect!

      July 14, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Common Sense

      "We will teach them to read and write, then they will be Christian no more."

      That's funny, because statistically speaking, children of church-going parents do better in school than their peers.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
  5. cgouyonnet

    We need to elect politicians who will get tough with these invaders. And the hell with the ACLU!!!!!!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • fasdfa

      That's right, the hell with anything that protects rights. We dont need no stinking rights, we should be like Syria, or Myanmar and North Korea. That is the kind of America we need, an un American one, burn the bill of rights.

      July 14, 2011 at 9:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. No duh?

    Let's see, hispanics are often catholic, catholics don't allow birth control.....

    Poor people often have more children, and hispanics are.......(You fill in the blank here, I'm not!)......


    WHO COULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING! Births, not sneaking under fences, are responsible for population boom?

    CNN should win the most intelligent online news content of the year award.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • brew987

      That's funny. LMAO

      July 14, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Walter

    Regardless of their background, I hope that all people having child in the United States are able to pay for their children's food, clothing, and shelter on their own. This country has a nearly 15 trillion dollar debt. Any new revenue from here on out can (and must) go to paying down the debt. The days of the government providing more and more funds for more and more children are over.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Me

    There culture? Where?

    July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • You

      Culture? Maybe it's over there? Or did you mean their? hmmm, funny how so many american-born citizens can't speak english as well as many people who learn it as a second language.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • xmxm

      "hmmm" is not a word.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Common Sense

      Maybe that's because they're too busy trying to compensate for the idiots who don't speak English.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sagebrush Shorty

      Funny how some people don't know enough to capitalize "American". Quit whining about other posters until you clean up your own act.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • brew987

      Funny how peolpe with nothing to say revert to proof reading. I guess you must think you're smart. Thanks for contributing to the conversation.

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

      Haha, well said.

      July 15, 2011 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Sean

      It was typed not spoken….. just sayin

      July 14, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      just "sayin"

      July 15, 2011 at 7:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Guest

      English is written with a capital "E"

      July 14, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      English is not the national language

      July 14, 2011 at 10:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • eville_11

      correct, its the most accepted and understood global language. unofficial but widely known..

      July 15, 2011 at 2:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Veronica

      American & English should be capitalized....thank you. English should be the first language for anyone living in this country.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • egger

      speak english? or speak English? But I agree many people do not know how to correctly speak or write the English language.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Troy

      What a weak as$ argument.

      July 14, 2011 at 10:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • IHateStupidPeople

      Who needs to learn English anymore? Everything's in Mexican now.......I mean Spanish.

      July 15, 2011 at 3:28 am | Report abuse |
    • WhyOhWhy?

      you mean *their* culture, right?

      July 14, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Frankie

      Some people make typo's, you ever heard of a typo? Just because someone forgets to PROOF READ doesn't mean they are uneducated. You trying to make yourself feel smarter by belittling others for not proof reading? Enough already, you know what the person was trying to say.

      July 15, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
    • lori

      But they have the audacity to say U.S language is english that we should only speak english but can't spell correctly in english what hippocrates!

      July 15, 2011 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dick Hertz

      If you can't live with that then leave? You won't be missed.

      July 16, 2011 at 12:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim in Texas

      They do not support education, innovation, and learning English. They have been and will continue to be working class poor until they embrace English, education, and white collar employment.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • rex

      Well Jim, I don't remember the pilgrims embracing learning any native languages...IdIoT!!!!

      July 14, 2011 at 6:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Texas teacher

      I am a Mexican-American teacher in Texas. Does that mean I do not value education or white collar employment?

      July 15, 2011 at 3:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Student

      Yes. I hate you. Spanish teachers suck.

      July 15, 2011 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • S.A. Texas777

      Apparently they're taking over so get use to it fart knocker

      July 15, 2011 at 4:18 am | Report abuse |
    • S.A. Texas777

      Apparently they're takin over so get use to it idiot

      July 15, 2011 at 4:21 am | Report abuse |
    • S.A. Texas777

      Deal with it

      July 15, 2011 at 4:22 am | Report abuse |
    • fasdfa

      Yes, because the only way to succeed is to learn english. Maybe you should talk to Carlos Slim

      July 18, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • white maggot

      It's "THEIR" not "THERE" you idiot!!

      July 14, 2011 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • You

      You know, their great artwork - the giant Mexican flag hand-painted on the hood of that red-blue-yellow-green-primer-rust 1982 Honda Civic. C'mon, I know you've seen it.

      July 14, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rachel

      "there culture?" you mean "their culture" get yourself educated, then try to be witty. Every country has culture, the fact that there is a high level of poverty doesn't mean a country doesn't have culture.

      July 14, 2011 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • fasdfa

      You sound so eloquent. A reflection of education perhaps?

      July 14, 2011 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Alicia

    To JJ mexicns keep wallet open in colorado.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Ed Rooney

    Damn roaches. Go back home and breed. 90% are on welfare too.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Californian

      Ed you are a roach too who emigrated probably from Europe. Go back and breed there too!

      July 14, 2011 at 4:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Patty Smitherman

    Has anyone mentioned that Hispanic immigrants are not "taking" jobs? What US citizen wants to harvest onions or pluck chickens? No one mentions that these laborers pay taxes on everything they buy as well as doing jobs no one else wants to do. We must fix the system at the federal level to have a faster processing of those who enter, sensible quotas, and a system to bring those here illegally into a legal status of some kind. Most of the anti-immigrant rants are hate-filled and based simply on that – hatred of the "other". What about compassion? Guess that word is not in the ranters' vocabulary!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  12. John Colombo

    Wow... The level of ignorance displayed in these comments is truly mind boggling. So many of you are quick to look at Hispanics/Latinos as the scapegoats for all (or most) that's wrong in this country, yet they do most of the work that you lazy bunch of hypocrites would NEVER do! You claim that they come here for welfare & WIC yet the VAST MAJORITY of them don't apply for such services, and that same VAST MAJORITY pay income tax and many never claim their income tax return at the end of the year for fear of retaliation by the same government that exploits them as cheap labor.

    July 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • cgouyonnet

      You need to spend some time at county hospitals all over this country. the amount of debt these hospitals are carry because these people dont have any type of health insurance and they leave milliions of taxpayers holding the bag. Our education system is in shambles, teachers are being let go because there is no money to educate the millions and millions of these hispanics kids, who in the end, will drop out because they dont have the intelligence or the support system because they come from paretns whose own level of education is at the 2nd grade level. Billions and Billions in welfare go to these people, yes, they may pay some taxes, but not enough to compensate for what they take, Wake up and smell the burritos, my friend.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Guest

      John Columbo .. please enlighten me .. what ILLEGAL immigant DO YOU KNOW that legitimately pays taxes? ..after all, one must have a SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER to do such things. Illegals are here living off the backs of hard working US Citizens and it must stop.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • fasdfa

      Oh Guest, you are a prime example of the deterioration of the American educational system. If you buy something in this country you usually pay taxes, if you work under someone else social security number you pay taxes and can never get them back. Seriously, stop smoking that stuff.

      July 14, 2011 at 9:08 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Sandeep

    Why does America give preference to illiterate latrine cleaners from latin America? So called latinos? There are millions of English speaking, highly skilled, LEGAL Indians waiting patiently for visa!!!

    38% of Doctors in America are Indians!!!

    12% of Scientists in America are Indians!!!

    36% of NASA employees are Indians!!!

    34% of MICROSOFT employees are Indians!!!

    28% of IBM employees are Indians!!!

    17% of INTEL employees are Indians!!!

    13% of XEROX employees are Indians!!!

    Jai Hind!!!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Me

      Sounds like the American Indians are doing quite well.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jello

      Because i rather have a latino next door than an extremist muslim

      July 14, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Californian

      America WAKE UP TO THE HINDI INVATION. Send them back to make bricks in Mumbai!

      July 14, 2011 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • what...?

      who else is going to run tech support?

      mexicans pick my veggies and indians run tech support, duh

      July 14, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • egger

      cause it's still america, latin or otherwise. indians are not a hot commodity, plus again, the smell test remember?

      July 14, 2011 at 5:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • fasdfa

      Seriously, you spend half an hour just trying to figure out what the heck they are trying to say in tech support. English from india and English in the US is not the same.

      July 14, 2011 at 9:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • fasdfa

      Seriously and what is this thing with the head bobbing around, like you are saying yes and no at the same time.

      July 14, 2011 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Alicia

    The women are putains, and a mexican generation is twelve years

    July 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  15. @Damien Knight

    Thank you for providing a concise way of showing what our boundaries are. I highly doubt the people who need it can READ it, though!

    July 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
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