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Nation's Population Increases by Three Million

WASHINGTON D.C. -- The nation's population grew by one percent -- 2.9 million people -- between July 1, 2003, and July 1, 2004, to 293.7 million, according to estimates released Wednesday by the U.S. Census Bureau. With a growth rate of 4.1 percent, Nevada ranked first among states for the 18th consecutive year. Four nearby states joined Nevada on the list of the nation's 10 fastest growing: Arizona (second), Idaho (fourth), Utah (seventh) and New Mexico (10th). The remaining top 10 fastest-growing states are all coastal: Florida (third), Georgia (fifth), Texas (sixth), Delaware (eighth) and North Carolina (ninth). North Carolina and New Mexico replaced California and Hawaii on the list of the top 10 fastest growing states this year. Of the 10 fastest-growing states from 2003 to 2004, five are in the West and five in the South. The South now accounts for 36 percent of the nation's total population, with the West comprising 23 percent, the Midwest 22 percent and the Northeast 19 percent. California remained the most populous state in the nation with 35.9 million people in 2004. The second and third most populous states were Texas (22.5 million) and New York (19.2 million). Other highlights: o The nation's 10 most populous states accounted for 54 percent of the nation's population on July 1, 2004. o The 10 fastest-growing states accounted for 49 percent of the national growth from 2003 to 2004. o Of the 10 most populous states in 2004, three (New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey) are in the Northeast, three (Illinois, Ohio, Michigan) in the Midwest, three (Texas, Florida, Georgia) in the South and one (California) in the West. o While the South had the largest numerical increase in population among regions from 2003 to 2004 (1.5 million), the West recorded the fastest rate of growth (1.5 percent). o The population estimate for Puerto Rico for July 1, 2004, was 3.9 million, up about 17,000 since July 1, 2003. Puerto Rico's rate of increase was 0.4 percent.

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May 19, 2019, 8:17 am PDT

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