Immigration’s Contribution to Population Growth and Economic Vitality

Madeline Zavodny
Date of Publication: 
February, 2021
Source Organization: 
National Foundation for American Policy

Immigration has been a major contributor to U.S. population growth and economic growth for most of the last 50 years. However, international migration – the number of people moving to the United States minus the number moving abroad – declined precipitously between 2016 and 2019.The drop in international migration, combined with falling birth rates, resulted in what may have been the slowest decade of population growth in U.S. history – and does not include the additional decline between 2019 and 2020 connected to Covid-19. The slowdown in population growth portends slower economic growth since population growth is central to long-run economic growth. This study examines the components of population growth during the 2010s and how they are related to employment growth. The study focuses on differences between metro areas (classified here as counties that are part of a metropolitan or micropolitan statistical area) and rural areas.

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Madeline Zavodny (2021, February). Immigration’s Contribution to Population Growth and Economic Vitality. National Foundation for American Policy