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A Profile of Older Americans: 2009

Geographic Distribution

The proportion of older persons in the population varies considerably by state with some states experiencing much greater growth in their older populations (Figures 4 and 5). In 2008, about half (51.2%) of persons 65+ lived in nine states. California had 4.1 million; Florida 3.2 million; New York 2.6 million; Texas 2.5 million; and Pennsylvania 1.9 million, Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, and New Jersey each had well over 1 million (Figure 6).

Person 65+ constituted approximately 14% or more of the total population in 11 states in 2008 (Figure 6): Florida (17.4%); West Virginia (15.7%); Pennsylvania (15.3%); Maine (15.1%); Iowa (14.8%); Hawaii (14.8%); North Dakota (14.7%); South Dakota (14.4%); Arkansas (14.3%); Montana (14.2); and Rhode Island (14.1%). In ten states, the 65+ population increased by 25% or more between 1998 and 2008 (Figure 6): Alaska (49.8%); Nevada (48.1%); Arizona (39.7%); Utah (33.7%); New Mexico (31.3%); Idaho (30.9%); Georgia (29.9%); South Carolina (27.3%); Colorado (27.2%); and Delaware (26.3%). The ten jurisdictions with the highest poverty rates for elderly during 2008 were Mississippi (16.7%), District of Columbia (15.6%), Kentucky (13.8%), Louisiana (13.6%), New Mexico (13.4%), North Dakota (13.0%), Arkansas (12.7%), South Carolina (12.4%), Texas (12.2%), and Georgia (12.1%).

Most persons 65+ lived in metropolitan areas in 2008 (80.6%). About 65% of these older persons lived outside the principal cities and 35% lived in principal cities. Also, 19% of older persons lived in nonmetropolitan areas.

The elderly are less likely to change residence than other age groups. From 2007 to 2008, only 3.7% of older persons moved as opposed to 13.1% of the under 65 population. Most older movers (56.4%) stayed in the same county and 79.9% remained in the same state. Only 20.1% of the movers moved out-of-state.

(Data for this section and for Figures 4-6 were compiled primarily from the Census Population Estimates for 2008 as well as other Internet releases of the U.S. Bureau of the Census including tables from the March 2009 Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement and the 2008 American Community survey )

Figure 4: Persons 65+ as a Percentage of Total Population - 2008

Figure 4 is a state map of the US showing the percent of persons over 65 in the population of each state.  This data may be found in the table Figure 6.

Figure 5: Percentage Increase in Population 65+ -- 1997 to 2007

Figure 5 is a US state map showing the perent increase in the older population of each state. The data may be found in the table in Figure 6.


Figure 6: The 65+ Population by State 2009

Numbers

Number of Persons 65 and Older

Percent of All Ages

Percent Increase from 1998 to 2008

Percent Below Poverty 2008

US Total (50 States + DC)

38,869,716

12.8%

13.0%

9.7%

Alabama

641,667

13.8%

12.9%

12.0%

Alaska

50,277

7.3%

49.8%

3.4%

Arizona

862,573

13.3%

39.7%

8.7%

Arkansas

407,205

14.3%

12.1%

12.7%

California

4,114,496

11.2%

13.8%

8.6%

Colorado

511,094

10.3%

27.2%

8.7%

Connecticut

478,007

13.7%

1.9%

7.8%

Delaware

121,688

13.9%

26.3%

7.1%

District of Columbia

70,648

11.9%

-2.8%

15.6%

Florida

3,187,797

17.4%

16.6%

10.4%

Georgia

981,024

10.1%

29.9%

12.1%

Hawaii

190,067

14.8%

20.1%

6.5%

Idaho

182,150

12.0%

30.9%

7.4%

Illinois

1,575,308

12.2%

5.3%

9.3%

Indiana

813,839

12.8%

10.0%

8.7%

Iowa

444,554

14.8%

3.1%

7.8%

Kansas

366,706

13.1%

3.6%

8.1%

Kentucky

565,867

13.3%

14.8%

13.8%

Louisiana

540,314

12.2%

7.3%

13.6%

Maine

199,187

15.1%

13.9%

8.9%

Maryland

679,565

12.1%

14.9%

8.0%

Massachusetts

871,098

13.4%

1.2%

10.1%

Michigan

1,304,322

13.0%

6.6%

8.6%

Minnesota

650,519

12.5%

11.6%

8.3%

Mississippi

371,598

12.6%

10.5%

16.7%

Missouri

805,235

13.6%

8.0%

9.4%

Montana

137,312

14.2%

17.3%

10.1%

Nebraska

240,847

13.5%

5.3%

9.7%

Nevada

296,717

11.4%

48.1%

8.7%

New Hampshire

169,978

12.9%

19.5%

8.6%

New Jersey

1,150,941

13.3%

4.1%

7.9%

New Mexico

260,051

13.1%

31.3%

13.4%

New York

2,607,672

13.4%

7.6%

11.6%

North Carolina

1,139,052

12.4%

20.3%

11.3%

North Dakota

94,276

14.7%

2.5%

13.0%

Ohio

1,570,837

13.7%

4.7%

8.8%

Oklahoma

490,637

13.5%

9.4%

10.9%

Oregon

503,998

13.3%

16.5%

8.6%

Pennsylvania

1,910,571

15.3%

0.3%

9.2%

Rhode Island

147,646

14.1%

-4.3%

11.2%

South Carolina

596,295

13.3%

27.3%

12.4%

South Dakota

116,100

14.4%

9.8%

10.7%

Tennessee

819,626

13.2%

20.7%

11.6%

Texas

2,472,223

10.2%

23.6%

12.2%

Utah

246,202

9.0%

33.7%

7.0%

Vermont

86,649

13.9%

19.4%

7.5%

Virginia

940,577

12.1%

22.6%

8.3%

Washington

783,877

12.0%

20.2%

8.0%

West Virginia

285,067

15.7%

3.8%

10.5%

Wisconsin

750,146

13.3%

8.6%

7.7%

Wyoming

65,614

12.3%

18.2%

7.6%

Puerto Rico

540,006

13.7%

42.4%

(Source: Population data is from Census Bureau 2008 Population Estimates. State level poverty data is from the Census 2008 American Community Survey. National level poverty data is from the 2009 Current Population Survey/American Social and Economic Supplement.)

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AoA - Statistics - A Profile of Older Americans 2009 - Income