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The U.S. is Getting Older

April 21, 2005

The U.S. is Getting Older
April 21, 2005 – USA TODAY reports that based on population projections released today by the Census Bureau, the elderly population in every state will grow faster than the total population, and seniors will outnumber school-age children in 10 states in the next 25 years.

The Census Bureau predicts that 26 states will double their populations of people older than 65 by 2030, when the oldest members of the baby boom generation hit their 80s. Florida, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Wyoming, North Dakota, Delaware, New Mexico, Montana, Maine and West Virginia will have fewer children than elderly. Only the District of Columbia will grow

Fast-growing states in the South and West will be more youthful as they retain younger baby boomers in their 60s and 70s and lure immigrants and younger families from other states.

"Arizona and Nevada will have the lowest share of ‘needy’ elderly and the highest share of ‘yuppie’ elderly," says William Frey, demographer at the Brookings Institution, a think tank in Washington, D.C.

Fast-growing states such as Nevada, whose population is expected to more than double by 2030, will see significant jumps in their elderly populations, but they will be balanced by increases in every age group. By contrast, North Dakota will experience declines in all age groups except 65 and older.

To read the projections and to see how U.S. states are aging, click here. Projections, the first the Census Bureau has done for states in eight years, are based on immigration and migration patterns and rates of births and deaths.

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