While a growing population does not necessarily correspond to a growing economy, it is an important demographic portending economic potential. Economic growth is a function of jobs and incomes.
Following is the latest estimate of US and state population growth. Also included is the District of Columbia. These estimated numbers from the U.S. Census are reported as of July 1 each year. To give an insight into more than the most recent 12 months, also included are population projections and state ranking for the five years ending July 2016. Note that eight states in the 12-months ending July 1, 2016 showed a decline in population, while four states lost population over the past five years.
The next table shows the cumulative population of all states as of July 1, 2016, sorted from most to least populous. The nine states with the greatest population make up more than one-half the total U.S. population. The 21 least populated states (including the District of Columbia) make up less than 10 percent of the total U.S. population.
Four of the states accounted for than one-half of all the population gains in the U.S. in 2016: Texas, Florida, California, and Washington. Illinois lost the most population in 2016, down 37,508 in the year.