New York could be on the way to its first population decline in any decade since the 1970s, according to the latest estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Empire State’s July 1, 2020 population of 19,336,776 was down 126,355, or 0.65 percent, from the estimated level of a year earlier, the estimates indicate. In both absolute and percentage terms, New York’s population drop in 2019-20 was the biggest among 16 states.

At the other extreme, Texas and Florida were big gainers in 2019-20— up 373,965 (1.29 percent) and 241,256 (1.12 percent) respectively. The national population during the same period was up another 1,154,170, or 0.35 percent. Below is a map of percentage changes by state based on the new data, which mainly cover a period before the coronavirus pandemic disrupted living patterns starting in March.

 

The 2020 estimated New York population represented a net decline of 41,326, or 0.21 percent, from the official decennial census count in 2010—largely because foreign immigration into the state has fallen off sharply since 2017, in line with a national trend. While components of population change were not released today, and won’t be available until next February at the earliest, previous annual census estimates have indicated that New York’s sagging population total is due mainly to an outmigration flow of 1.4 million people to other states since 2010.

If New York’s estimated trend holds true in the final decennial census count for 2020, it will also translate into a loss of up to two congressional seats. Only five other states—West Virginia, Illinois, Vermont, Connecticut and Mississippi—have experienced estimated population decreases from 2010 to 2020.

Other quick takes:

  • New York also has been losing population faster than the Northeast Region as a whole, which was down 0.27 percent in the latest year but up almost 1 percent since 2010. Ranking just ahead of New York in 2019-20 in the 50-state count was Illinois, the fiscal and economic basket case of the Midwest, which was down 79,487 people, or 0.63 percent during the year ending July 1.
  • The nation’s population has increased 20,738,585, or 6.72 percent, since the 2010 census. Major states running well ahead of the national trend included Florida, perennially the biggest migration gainer from New York, whose estimated population was up 2,932,002, or 15.59 percent, and Texas, up 4,215,198, or 16.76 percent.

For more Empire Center research and analysis of demographic trends since 2009, click here.

 

About the Author

E.J. McMahon

Edmund J. McMahon is Empire Center's founder and a senior fellow.

Read more by E.J. McMahon

You may also like

Lawmakers Add to the High Cost of Health Insurance in New York with Tax Hikes and Mandates

State lawmakers ended their session by passing a flurry of bills making health insurance even less affordable. Read More

Record high public pension fund return won’t necessarily mean lower pension costs

The cost to taxpayers of New York's generous pension benefits for government employees depends largely on the performance of pension fund investments. Read More

Digging deeper on the (very deep) East Side Access project

Governor Cuomo held a press conference at Grand Central Terminal today to announce completion of construction work on the $11 billion East Side Access project, which for the first time will provide direct Long Island Railroad (LIRR) service to and from Gr Read More

New York’s State Share of Medicaid Spending is Due to Jump 22 Percent This Fiscal Year

The state share of Medicaid spending is projected to jump 22 percent under the recently approved state budget, an unusually steep one-year jump for what is already one of New York's biggest expenditures. Read More

Where were New Yorkers headed in the run-up to the pandemic?

The Empire State has lost a net 1,585,770 residents to the rest of the country since 2010, the largest outflow of any state Read More

Financial plan update reflects NY state budget loaded with cash

A year after Governor Cuomo declared the state was "broke" due to the pandemic, New York's budget is bursting with cash Read More

New York’s jobs recovery outpaced U.S. in April

Private-sector employment in New York increased faster than the nationwide recovery rate in the month of April, according to The April count of private-sector employment was estimated at 7.4 million jobs, up slightly mo Read More

Voters Approve Nearly All School Budgets Within Tax Cap

School budget votes proposing an average increase in per pupil spending of 4.2 percent were overwhelmingly approved in state-wide voting held yesterday. Read More

Subscribe

Sign up to receive updates about Empire Center research, news and events in your email.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Empire Center for Public Policy
30 South Pearl St.
Suite 1210
Albany, NY 12207

Phone: 518-434-3100

General Inquiries: Info@EmpireCenter.org

Press Inquiries: Press@EmpireCenter.org

About

The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.

Empire Center Logo Enjoying our work? Sign up for email alerts on our latest news and research.
Together, we can make New York a better place to live and work!