Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Are Children Under Age 5 Minority-Majority?

The minority share of children under age 5 crossed an important threshold in 2014, according to the Census Bureau. For the first time, Asians, Blacks, Hispanics, and other minorities outnumbered non-Hispanic Whites in the age group—50.2 percent to 49.8 percent. But there's a problem with these figures. The Census Bureau's race-and-Hispanic-origin estimates of the population under age 5 do not match vital statistics data.

The Census Bureau has estimated that there were 19.9 million children under age 5 in the United States in 2014, a number nearly matching the 19.8 million births recorded in the 2010-to-2014 time period (the population under age 5 in 2014). The Census Bureau's under-5 total population estimate aligns with vital statistics data. The mismatch occurs in the race-and-Hispanic-origin distribution of that population. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the minority share of births from 2010 to 2014 was 45.9 percent. The non-Hispanic White share of births was 54.1 percent. Is the nation's under-5 population minority-majority? Perhaps not yet.

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