The population of Massachusetts continued to grow at a faster rate than any other state in New England, but lagged behind the rate of growth for the country as a whole, according to the latest estimates from the US Census Bureau.
The state’s population was about 6.81 million as of July 1, 2016, up by about 27,500 people, or 0.41 percent from a year earlier.
The increase was driven primarily by two factors: about 14,500 more babies were born than people who died between July 1, 2015, and 2016; and about 15,300 more people moved here than moved away.
(Adding those two numbers results in a figure that is slightly higher than the overall population change. The Census says it adjusted the total downward by about 2,000 because of other factors.)
The population gain from people moving to the Bay State was driven by an influx of people coming from other countries, not people coming from other states. In fact, Massachusetts saw a net loss from people who moved within the United States.
Looking back five years, the state’s population has increased by about 153,800 people, or about 2.3 percent. That’s about the same number of people as currently live in the city of Springfield.
That increase was driven by the same factors that drove the most recent yearly increase.
The next-fastest growing state in New England for both the one- and five-year spans was New Hampshire.
The Granite State’s population reached 1.335 million as of July 1, up 0.35 percent from a year before and up by 1 percent over the most recent five-year stretch.
Rhode Island and Maine have each seen just slight population growth during the one- and five-year spans, while Vermont and Connecticut each had slightly lower populations in July than they did compared with the year before and five years before.
The national population reached 323.1 million as of July, up by about 2.2 million people, or 0.7 percent, from a year earlier, and up by 9.1 million, or 2.9 percent, over the five-year span.
In each of the four major regions of the country that the Census bureau identifies — the Northeast, Midwest, South, and West — populations have increased overall in recent years, but the South and West have grown at much faster rates than the other two regions.
In each region, births have outnumbered deaths. Additionally, among people who have moved internationally, more have moved into, than out of, each region.
But among people relocating domestically, there have been noticeable regional differences. More people are moving out of, than into, the Northeast and Midwest, and more people moving to, than away from, the South and West.
In fact, the fastest-growing state between July 2015 and 2016 was Utah, which grew by 2.03 percent. After that came, Nevada (1.95 percent), Idaho (1.83), Florida (1.82 percent) and Washington (1.78 percent).