Census data shows NC is third fastest growing state

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North Carolina added 133,088 new residents from domestic migration over the last year, the third highest total nationally, according to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

From July 1, 2021 and July 1, 2022, the state population jumped to 10,698,973  from 10,565,885 – the third largest increase, behind Texas at 470,708, and Florida at 416,754.

Overall, the U.S. population increased by 0.4%, or 1,256,003, to 333,287,557 in 2022, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Vintage 2022 national and state population estimates released in December.

The biggest gains from net domestic migration last year were in Florida (318,855), Texas (230,961) and North Carolina (99,796), while the biggest losses were in California (-343,230), New York (-299,557) and Illinois (-141,656).

Net international migration — the number of people moving in and out of the country — added 1,010,923 people between 2021 and 2022 and was the primary driver of growth. Positive natural change (births minus deaths) increased the population by 245,080.

“There was a sizeable uptick in population growth last year compared to the prior year’s historically low increase,” said Kristie Wilder, a demographer in the population division at the Census Bureau. “A rebound in net international migration, coupled with the largest year-over-year increase in total births since 2007, is behind this increase.”

The South was the fastest-growing region last year, increasing by 1.1%, or 1,370,163 and the West was the only other region to grow in 2022, adding 153,601 residents — an annual increase of 0.2% for a total resident population of 78,743,364 — despite losing 233,150 residents via net domestic migration.

The Northeast, with a population of 57,040,406, and the Midwest, with a population of 68,787,595, lost 218,851 (-0.4%) and 48,910 (-0.1%) residents, respectively. The declines in these regions were due to negative net domestic migration.

Texas was the largest-gaining state in the nation, reaching a total population of 30,029,572. By crossing the 30-million-population threshold this past year, Texas joins California as the only states with a resident population above 30 million.

Florida was the fastest-growing state in 2022, with an annual population increase of 1.9%, resulting in a total resident population of 22,244,823.

“While Florida has often been among the largest-gaining states,” Wilder noted, “this was the first time since 1957 that Florida has been the state with the largest percent increase in population.”

It was also the second largest-gaining state behind Texas, with an increase of 416,754 residents. Net migration was the largest contributing component of change to Florida’s growth, adding 444,484 residents.

New York had the largest annual numeric and percent population decline, decreasing by 180,341 (-0.9%). Net domestic migration (-299,557) was the largest contributing component to the state’s population decline.

Eighteen states experienced a population decline in 2022.

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