California’s white population continues to decline
June 5, 2010
Newly released figures indicate that California’s white population has declined since 2000 at an unprecedented rate, making it possible for Hispanics eventually to emerge as the state’s largest population group. [San Francisco Chronicle]
There were 500,000 fewer whites living in California in 2008 than in 2000, according to statistics released by the state Department of Finance. The decline took place at the same time as the overall population increased by 4 million to a new high of 38.1 million.
By 2008, whites made up 40 percent of Californians, down from 47 percent at the turn of the century. By comparison, the Hispanic population grew during the same period from 30 percent up to 37 percent.
Analysts say one reason for the population shift is the so-called “white flight” as Anglos have left the state for Nevada, Washington, and Arizona, where their dollar goes further.
There is also a decline in births among white Californians, contributing to the new demographic. White women are putting more emphasis on career and not having as many babies.
A steadily growing Hispanic population is expected to surpass whites as the state’s largest racial demographic in 2016. Hispanics are expected to become a majority of all Californians by 2042.
The median age for whites in California is 44; 28 for Hispanics.