Asian Immigrant Population to Be Largest in U.S. by 2055: Study

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A recent Pew Research Center study has predicted that Asian immigrants will surpass those of Hispanics by the year 2055 in the United States. The study, published Sept. 28, said that immigration in the U.S. has increased from 9.6 million in 1965 to 45 million this year. And by 2065, researchers said there will be roughly 78 million immigrants throughout the nation.

In the 50 years since 1965, America’s population growth was heavily weighted by new immigrants coming over with their children and grandchildren to the tune of 55 percent. In turn, the nation’s demographics have shifted.

In 1965, 84 percent of Americans were non-Hispanic white people. But by 2015, non-Hispanic white people accounted for 62 percent of the population. The Hispanic population in the nation, over that same time span, has grown from 4 percent to 18 percent. Likewise, the Asian population grew from 1 percent in 1965 to 6 percent this year.

The data reflects the change resulting from the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 when the U.S. swept away a national origins quota system that favored immigrants from Europe. It changed its focus to family reunification and skilled immigrants.

Pew’s researchers have determined that there will be another shift coming, but within the immigration population. While Hispanics have accounted for the largest percentage of the population among U.S. immigrants since the 1965 act, Asians will slowly overtake the lead in that category in the next 40 years. Currently 47 percent of immigrants are of Hispanic descent. Asian immigrants, which include Pacific Islanders, account for 26 percent in 2015.

While Hispanics will have a larger population for the considerable future, by 2055, researchers said, Asian immigrants will leapfrog Hispanics as the largest immigrant population in the U.S., at 36 percent to 34 percent. That percentage gap will grow by 2065 to a 7 percent margin with Asian immigrants totaling 38 percent of the population to Hispanics’ 31 percent.

In total population, Asians will account for 14 percent of America’s total population – those born in the U.S. and abroad – by 2065, up from the 6 percent in 2015. Meanwhile, by 2055, no racial or ethnic group will constitute a majority of the population. The non-Hispanic whites’ population in the country will be less than 50 percent by 2055 and is projected to be 46 percent by 2065.

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