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Utah is Fastest-Growing State

     Utah was the nation's fastest-growing state between July 1, 2007, and July 1, 2008, as its population climbed 2.5 percent to 2.7 million, according to estimates released today by the U.S. Census Bureau.

     Arizona was the second fastest-growing state, increasing 2.3 percent between 2007 and 2008. Texas, North Carolina and Colorado completed the top five, each with a growth rate of 2.0 percent. Nevada, which had been among the four fastest-growing states each of the last 24 years, grew 1.8 percent and ranked eighth over the most recent period.

     ;Texas gained more people than any other state between July 1, 2007, and July 1, 2008 (484,000), followed by California (379,000), North Carolina (181,000), Georgia (162,000) and Arizona (147,000).

     The only two states to lose population were Michigan and Rhode Island. Michigan's population declined 0.5 percent (46,000), while Rhode Island's fell 0.2 percent (2,000).

     California remained the most populous state, with about 36.8 million people on July 1, 2008. Rounding out the top five states were Texas (24.3 million), New York (19.5 million), Florida (18.3 million) and Illinois (12.9 million).

     Other highlights:

  • On the whole, the Northeastern states have gained population at an increasing rate since 2005, a turnaround from their declining growth rates from 2000 to 2005.
  • Six of the 10 fastest-growing states from 2007 to 2008 were Rocky Mountain states: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, Utah and Wyoming. Three others lined the South Atlantic coast: Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.
  • The West was the fastest-growing region (1.4 percent) between 2007 and 2008, but the South added the highest number of people over the period (1.4 million).
  • The estimated July 1, 2008, population for Puerto Rico was 4 million, up by 0.3 percent (13,000) from one year earlier.

Table A. Leading 10 States/Equivalents by Population Change: July 1, 2007, to July 1, 2008

Top 10 Fastest-Growing Top 10 Numeric Gainers
State Percent
State Change
1. Utah 2.5 1. Texas 483,542
2. Arizona 2.3 2. California 379,132
3. Texas 2.0 3. North Carolina 180,820
4. North Carolina 2.0 4. Georgia 162,447
5. Colorado 2.0 5. Arizona 146,759
6. Idaho 1.8 6. Florida 128,814
7. Wyoming 1.8 7. Washington 99,713
8. Nevada 1.8 8. Colorado 96,686
9. Georgia 1.7 9. Illinois 75,754
10. South Carolina 1.7 10. South Carolina 74,886
The Census Bureau develops state population estimates by measuring population change since the most recent census. It uses births, deaths, administrative records and survey data to develop estimates of population. For more detail regarding the methodology see <http://www.census.gov/popest/topics/methodology/>.
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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: February 10, 2014