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The Trend for Latinos Is More U.S.-Born, More Adults: Pew Report

An immigration slowdown means fewer foreign-born Latinos, though they remain one of the fastest growing as well as the largest U.S. minority.
Image: Gael Alvarado, Perla Ortiz,  Yahir Perez
File 2011 photo of Hispanic students at Hanby Elementary School in Mesquite, Texas. A new Pew Research report finds most of the growth in the U.S. Hispanic population is births and not immigration. LM Otero / AP

More and more U.S.-born Hispanics are entering adulthood, the Pew Research Hispanic Trends Project reportedTuesday.

At this point some 800,000 U.S.-born Hispanics enter adulthood annually and in coming decades it will be more than a million annually, the center reported.

That acceleration is happening as a slowdown in Hispanic immigration is occurring and is being outpaced by Latino births. About as many people from Mexico are leaving the U.S. as they are entering.

In the decade from 2000 to 2010, there were 9.6 million Hispanic births in the U.S., while the number of newly arrived Hispanic immigrants was 6.5 million. In the two decades preceding, immigration had been the driver of Latino population growth.

Latinos are the largest minority group, 17 percent of the U.S. population, and the population's numbers are expected to grow to 129 million by 2060, with Hispanics making up 31 percent of the population by then. Hispanics can be of any race.

Additional findings from Pew’s analysis of the 2012 American Community Survey data were:

_ Though California and Texas still have the largest number of Hispanics, the five states with the fastest growing Latino populations from 2000 to 2012 were: Tennessee (up 163 percent); South Carolina (161 percent); Alabama (157 percent); Kentucky (135 percent) and South Dakota (132 percent).

_ About 70 percent of immigrant children between 5 and 17 say they speak only English or speak English very well. But about a third of immigrant adults say they speak only English or speak English very well.

_ A larger share of Hispanics are remaining single, with 37 percent ages 18 and older never marrying in 2012, compared to 27 percent in 2000. The percentage of households with 5 or more people has fallen from 31 percent in 2000 to 26 percent in 2012.

_ About 48 percent of native-born Latino households are owner-occupied, compared to 44 percent of immigrant Latino households.

_Some 29 percent of Latinos did not have health insurance in 2012, more than any other group. There is variation though - only 18 percent of native-born Hispanics lacked insurance, compared to 49 percent of foreign-born Latinos and 61 percent of non-citizen immigrant Hispanics.

--Suzanne Gamboa