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38.2 Million Californians: Fastest Growth in a Decade

After years of lower-than-normal population growth, more foreign immigrants are coming to California. The new residents contributed to a 332,000 increase in the state's population, the largest in nearly a decade, says the Calif. Dept. of Finance.
December 16, 2013, 9am PST | Irvin Dawid
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"The estimated population rose 0.88%, exceeding 38.2 million as of July. Most of that growth was 'natural increase' — births minus deaths. But those numbers stayed roughly the same as in recent years, while immigration has increased," writes Emily Alpert Reyes.

The California Department of Finance considered the growth "slow", but called it "the fastest that California has seen since 2003-04, well before the recession," Reyes adds. What's made the difference is the 170,000 net immigrants to the state between July 2012 and July 2013

To be sure, one thing hasn't changed: more Californians are leaving the state than migrating here from other states - 103,000 in all.

The one region where more migrants moved in than out is the high-priced Bay Area, reports the Mercury News' Julia Prodis Sulek in the Contra Costa Times, calling it "another sign of the tech industry's rebound and the creation of more jobs here." However, that population gain didn't hold throughout the greater region.

Domestic migration within the Bay Area has bounced for the last few years and is now in positive territory, with some 4,800 more people moving in than moving out. While Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa and Santa Cruz counties enjoyed gains during the 12-month period, the two main employments hubs of the Bay Area -- Santa Clara and San Francisco counties -- saw 3,522 and 1,824 residents, respectively, move away. Just over 1,900 people left San Mateo County.

California's population grew by roughly 332,000 people in the last fiscal year — its biggest increase in nearly a decade, according to new California Department of Finance estimates.

The Dept. of Finance now projects [PDF] that the state "will cross the 50 million mark in 2049 and grow to nearly 52.7 million by 2060." Last year we posted here that a USC study put the 50 million threshold at 2046.

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Published on Thursday, December 12, 2013 in Los Angeles Times
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