US World & News: How things are changing

· stress

In an article by Danielle Kurtzleben in US World & News Report,

7 Ways the U.S. Population is Changing

For example Boomers will remember all those years of doom and gloom, that the world was reproducing so fast that we were using up all the worlds resources? Well surprisingly the first “change” is

1. (Slowing) Growth

The most obvious and constant change to the U.S. population is growth. But 2010 census numbers show that population growth had dropped to 9.7 percent, its lowest level since the Great Depression. The U.S. growth rate has also lagged behind world population growth over the last decade. The estimated world population of nearly 6.9 billion, meanwhile, is up 12.5 percent from 2000. However, U.S. growth remains ahead of many other developed nations, particularly European countries, whose populations may actually decline between now and 2050.

2. Moving West and South

… According to the Pew Hispanic Center, the state with the largest share of foreign-born residents is California, with 26.9 percent. Another western state, Montana, posted the largest increase of foreign-born people over the last decade, with a 60.9 percent jump.

Number 3 below comes at no surprise, especially for those taking care of parent. The unmentioned impact is that for every retired non-working adult, there will be only 4 working adults paying taxes to support that person:

3. Aging

The estimated population median age in 2009 was 36.8, up from 35.3 in 2000—a natural consequence of 77 million baby boomers pulling that figure upward with every passing year. The birth rate has also been relatively flat since the 1970s, and in 2009 posted the largest two-year drop in over 30 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Altogether, the elderly segment of the population is expected to increase dramatically. A Congressional Research Service report released this year projected that people 65 and older—currently constituting 13 percent of the population—would make up 20.2 percent of the U.S. population by 2050.

4. Becoming More Diverse (…and particularly, more Hispanic)

The white, non-Hispanic segment of the population is steadily shrinking … The Census Bureau predicts that, by 2050, white people will only make up 46.3 percent of the population. The burgeoning Hispanic population is one major reason for this projected shift—the Hispanic populace grew a staggering 43.1 percent from 2000 into 2010, and is expected to make up 30 percent of the population in 2050, up from its current share of 16 percent. Other groups expected to post significant growth are Asians, from 4.7 percent in 2010 to 7.8 percent in 2050, and people of two or more races, from 1.9 percent in 2010 to 3.7 percent in 2050.

Aye Caramba!

Moving on the number 5 below, what can you say? The rich are getting richer and the poor…
Bad news for someone trying to take care of a parent or spouse with Alzheimer’s. Last year’s statistics have Americans spending well over $100 billion out of pocket for the care of a family member with dementia.

5. Increasing Income Inequality:  (for details please refer to the original article at US World & News Report.  Essentially, the heading Increasing Income Inequality says it all)

Continuing on, number 6 is good news. Now if we can just get women earning equal money for equal pay, we might make dent on number 5 above.

6. More Women with Diplomas
The U.S. population is getting more educated as a whole, with 87 percent of adults 25 and older having high school diplomas in 2010—up from 84 percent in 2000. But women in particular are helping to drive America’s growing educational attainment. The Census Bureau reported this year that 37 percent of employed women have attained a bachelor’s degree or more (as of 2010), compared to 35 percent of men. Women have also surpassed men in terms of advanced degrees; 10.6 million American women have master’s degrees or higher, compared to 10.5 million men. However, men still have far more professional and doctoral degrees than women.

Finally we have number 7 below. Which is a little anti-climatic, as it seems this has been going on for a long time. Do you remember the Yuppies and DINKS of the 1980’s? Double Income No Kids was the description of married couples that were putting off children way back then…

7. Waiting to Procreate
An increasing number of those educated women are putting off childbearing. According to the Census Bureau, among women aged 25 to 34 in 2000, 83 percent with less than a high-school education had given birth, compared to 42 percent of women with bachelor’s degrees. But 10 years later, the gap within that same cohort had closed considerably—88 percent of women without high school diplomas had children, as well as 76 percent of women with bachelor’s degrees.

–thanks to Ms. Kurtzleben and World & News Report

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