New report finds U.S. cities with biggest population declines: California dominates the list

Golden Gate Media
Other California cities, including Santa Ana, Glendale, Inglewood, San Jose, Pasadena, Concord, and Corona, also find a place on the list.Photo byMaarten van den HeuvelonUnsplash

A recent study by financial technology company SmartAsset has shed light on the significant population declines experienced by various U.S. cities, with California cities taking a prominent position in the list of the top 10 places witnessing the largest population decreases over the past five years.

The key findings from the study reveal that Paradise, Nevada, leads the charts with a staggering 22.0% population decline between 2017 and 2022.

This rate is nearly double that of the second-place city, Jackson, Mississippi, which experienced a decline of approximately 12.7%.

The trend of diminishing populations extends to California, where the Golden State's cities constitute 40% of the top 25 places with the most significant population decreases.

El Monte, California, ranks fifth in the nation with a 9.3% population reduction, while San Francisco secures the sixth position with an 8.6% decrease over the five-year period.

Other California cities, including Santa Ana, Glendale, Inglewood, San Jose, Pasadena, Concord, and Corona, also find a place on the list.

East Los Angeles, California, comes in third on the national ranking, reporting a 10.0% population decrease over five years. The study highlights that several California cities are experiencing demographic shifts that may impact the housing market, small businesses, and employment opportunities.

The top 10 cities with the most significant five-year population declines are as follows:

  1. Paradise, Nevada (22.0%)
  2. Jackson, Mississippi (12.7%)
  3. East Los Angeles, California (10.0%)
  4. Aurora, Illinois (10.0%)
  5. El Monte, California (9.3%)
  6. San Francisco, California (8.6%)
  7. Hialeah, Florida (8.1%)
  8. Detroit, Michigan (7.8%)
  9. Santa Ana, California (7.8%)
  10. Birmingham, Alabama (7.7%)

The study, which examined 344 U.S. cities with populations of 100,000 or higher in 2022, emphasizes the importance of understanding demographic changes to navigate evolving trends effectively. While some cities in the Southwest, like those in Nevada, Arizona, and Texas, have experienced population growth, certain regions, especially in California, face notable declines. The factors contributing to these changes may include birth rates, deaths, and migration patterns.

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