North Carolina is a state in the southern United States with a population of 10,155,624 and an area of 48,618 square miles. It ranks as the ninth largest state in terms of population and the 22nd smallest state in terms of area.
Race and ethnicity
According to the most recent estimates from the US Census Bureau, 63.30% of state residents identify as white, 21.10% as black or African-American, 1.10% as American Indian or native-born. Alaska, 2.80% as Asians, 0.10% as native Hawaiians or others. Pacific Islander, 9.20% as Hispanic or Latino, and 2.40% as another race or combination of races.
Nationally, some 61.1% of Americans identify as white, 12.3% as black or African-American, 0.7% as Native American or Alaskan native, 5.4% as Asians, 0.2% as native Hawaiians or other Pacific Islanders, 17.8% as Hispanics or Latinos, and 2.6% as another race or combination of races.
Census respondents are also asked to report their ancestry. Some of the most commonly reported ancestries in North Carolina are: American, German, English, Irish, and Italian. Measured by the location quotient – comparing state share to national share – some of the most concentrated ancestries in North Carolina are Scottish-Irish, American and African.
Indigenous and foreign-born population
It is estimated that 92.10% of North Carolina residents were born in the country, meaning they were born in the United States, Puerto Rico, an island region of the United States, or overseas from a American citizen.
Of the 7.90% of the foreign-born population, 38.20% became naturalized US citizens. Nationally, 86.5% of Americans were born in the country. And of the 13.5% of Americans born abroad, 48.8% became naturalized US citizens.
North Carolina’s population is about as old as the entire United States. The median age in the state is 38.6 years, 0.7 years older than the national median age of 37.9 years. An estimated 15.50% of the population is 65 and over, compared to 15.2% of the US population.
Family and household composition
Family and household makeup also varies greatly across the United States. In North Carolina, 48.10% of households are occupied by married couples, compared to 48.3% nationally. Some 4.40% of households are occupied by single men, 13.10% by single women and 34.30% by non-family occupants. Nationally, 4.9% of households are occupied by single men, 12.6% by single women and 34.3% by non-family occupants. It is estimated that 65.00% of heads of household own their homes, compared to the national home ownership rate of 63.8%.
As is the case in the United States, English is the most widely spoken language in North Carolina. Of the 9,552,400 people aged 5 and over living in North Carolina, 95.4% speak English exclusively or, if multilingual, speak English very well. Not only is English the majority language spoken in the state, but its use is even more common than nationally where an average of 91.5% of the population aged 5 and over speak only English. English, or speaks it very well.
Spanish is the second most spoken language in the United States. In North Carolina, 7.5% of the population aged 5 and over speaks Spanish, the 21st highest among all states. Nationally, 13.3% of all Americans in the same age group speak Spanish.
Residents of North Carolina are more likely to be married than the typical American. Of the 8.3 million North Carolina residents aged 15 and older, 48.9% are currently married, compared with 48.1% of Americans in the same age group nationally. Divorce, meanwhile, is as common in the United States as it is nationally. In North Carolina, 10.8% of the population aged 15 and over is divorced, compared to 10.8% for the same age group in the United States as a whole.
An estimated 31.4% of North Carolina residents aged 15 and over have never married, compared to one-third of Americans in the same age group.
In North Carolina, 8.6% of the population 18 and over are veterans – above the 7.5% of adult civilians who have served in the military nationwide. Compared to other states, North Carolina is home to the 24th highest proportion of veterans.
As is the case nationally, most of the veterans living in the state served during the Vietnam era. Of the 667,700 resident veterans of North Carolina, 2.9% served in World War II, 34.9% served in the Vietnam War, 23.5% served between the start of the North Carolina War Gulf and 2001 and 20.8% have served since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. November 11, 2001. 48,900 additional men and women have served in the Korean War.
In North Carolina, adults are about as likely to have a high school diploma as the typical American adult, but less likely to have a four-year college degree. Among North Carolina residents aged 25 and over, 87.4% have a high school diploma or equivalent, and 30.5% have a bachelor’s degree or above, compared with 87.7% and 31.5 % of adults nationwide, respectively.
While this is not always the case, incomes tend to increase with school completion rates in large populations – and North Carolina is no exception. With a lower than average baccalaureate graduation rate, the state also has a lower than average median income. The typical household in North Carolina earns $ 52,413 per year, or about $ 7,900 less than the national median household income of $ 60,293.
Additionally, North Carolina has a lower than average concentration of wealthy residents. It is estimated that 4.9% of households in the state earn $ 200,000 or more per year, compared to 7.0% of households nationwide.
With median household income below average, severe financial hardship is more common in the state than in the country as a whole. North Carolina’s poverty rate is 15.4%, while the national poverty rate is 14.1%.
Learn more about population and demographics
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