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September 2015

United States immigration patterns set to change

Published: Friday 09 October 2015

A new study has predicted that Asians will overtake Hispanics to become the largest immigrant source group in the United States within the next 50 years.

The study of immigration patterns, carried out by the Pew Research Centre, predicts that by 2055, Asians will account for 36 percent of all American immigrants, while Hispanics will account for 34 per cent.

Currently 47 per cent of immigrants living in the United States are Hispanic, while 26 per cent are Asian.

Part of the reason for the shift is that the fertility rate of women in Latin America, especially Mexico, has decreased. According to Mark Hugo Lopez, Pew’s director of Hispanic research, Mexican women now have on average two children, whereas back in the 1960s and 1970s, they were having about seven children each.

The study also found that white immigrants to America, which accounted for 80 per cent of US-based immigrants back in 1965, will hover somewhere between 18 per cent and 20 per cent over the coming 50 years, with black immigrants in the 8 per cent to 9 per cent range.

Presently, immigrants make up approximately 14 per cent of the US population – an increase from 5 per cent in 1965.

Pew researchers analysed a combination of Census Bureau information and the firm’s own data to develop their projections.