Last year, the US Asian population grew by 2.9%, or 530,000 people, the fastest of any ethnic group. More than 60% of that came from immigration, the Census Bureau reported.
In contrast, barely one-fourth of Latinos came to the US as immigrants last year—three-quarters of the population gains resulted from new births. The Hispanic population grew 2.2%, or by 1.1 million people.
Asians also were the fastest growing ethnic group from 2000 to 2010 in fueled by rising demand for skilled scientists and engineers. Increasingly Asians are moving beyond the traditional centers in the US: More than 75,000 Asians live in Atlanta, suburban Detroit (pdf), Houston and Minneapolis. Depending on the outcome of the current immigration reform talks in Washington D.C., the number of highly skilled workers with expertise in science and engineering could continue to grow even more.
Chinese Americans are the largest Asian ethnic group, with more than 3.8 million residents in 2010, followed by Filipinos and Indians.
The numeric growth in the Asian population just about equalled the gains for African Americans, though the black community is more than twice as large as the Asian community. The African American population grew 1.3%, the slowest of any US ethnic group, Census officials said. The white population grew by a mere 0.5%, and one-third of that came from immigration.
Latinos remain the largest group, with 53 million US residents, followed by the 44 million African Americans. There are 18.9 million Asian and Asian Americans. Overall, the US minority population reached 116 million, 37% of the total. By 2043, the Census Bureau has predicted a demographic shift whereby minorities will be the majority.