E.g., 11/24/2020
E.g., 11/24/2020

U.S. Data

U.S. Data

More than 43 million people living in the United States—whether as naturalized citizen, legal permanent resident, temporary resident, or unauthorized immigrant—were born in another country, representing 13 percent of the U.S. population. Immigration has ebbed and flowed throughout U.S. history, peaking at nearly 15 percent of the population in 1890 and plummeting to 5 percent in 1970. The data-rich research offered here traces the U.S. immigrant population by size, educational and workforce characteristics, English language proficiency, and more.

For information on U.S. immigrants by state, check out the State Immigration Data Profiles tool. And for detailed profiles on unauthorized immigrants nationally and by state, visit this tool.

Recent Activity

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Fact Sheets
October 2008
By  Aaron Terrazas

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Latin America and the Caribbean account for the largest percentage of the foreign born in the armed forces. MPI's Laura Barker and Jeanne Batalova report.

The United States' education system has been a major educational destination for foreign students for decades. MPI’s Jeanne Batalova describes the foreign student and exchange visitor population in the United States and highlights recent policy developments affecting them.

Members of the second generation are more likely to finish college than both the foreign born and those who are third generation and higher. David Dixon looks at general social and demographic characteristics of the second generation in the United States.

Over 604,000 immigrants received U.S. citizenship in 2005. MPI's Jeanne Batalova takes a detailed look at the latest naturalization trends in the United States.

The total number of nonimmigrants admitted to the U.S. more than tripled between 1985 and 2005. MPI's Jeanne Batalova outlines the definition of nonimmigrants and takes a detailed look at admissions data.

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Recent Activity

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The middle class has received considerable attention during the current economic crisis. About 15 million people resided in middle-class immigrant households in 2007, and three-quarters of all children in such households were native-born U.S. citizens. MPI's Aaron Terrazas examines where the heads of middle-class immigrant households are from, when they arrived in the United States, their occupations, and other characteristics.

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The 102,000 Iraqi immigrants residing in the United States in 2007 accounted for just 0.3 percent of all U.S. immigrants. MPI's Aaron Terrazas examines their socioeconomic characteristics, where they live, and the category of admission of the Iraqi-born immigrant population.

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The 1.4 million African immigrants residing in the United States in 2007 accounted for 3.7 percent of all U.S. immigrants. MPI's Aaron Terrazas examines their socioeconomic characteristics, where they live, and the category of admission of the African-born immigrant population.

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The 1.0 million Korean immigrants residing in the United States in 2007 accounted for 2.7 percent of all U.S. immigrants. MPI's Aaron Terrazas examines their socioeconomic characteristics, where they live, and the size of the Korean-born unauthorized population.

Reports
January 2009

Drawing on several sources of survey data, this report will examine the major contours of American public opinion toward immigration and immigration policy.

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Contrary to a widely held view, not all immigrants have little education. About one in three immigrants is a person with either a U.S. or foreign college degree.

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In 2006, Department of Homeland Security immigration officials made over 1.2 million apprehensions of immigrants at points of entry along the U.S. border and within the United States. MPI's Aaron Terrazas examines the most recent data on immigration enforcement.

Reports
October 2008

This exploratory study provides an unprecedented assessment of the “brain-waste” phenomenon in the United States—a serious waste of human capital resulting from the unemployment or underemployment of highly skilled college-educated immigrants.

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