New Jersey Department of Labor
Contact: Kevin Smith 609/292-3221
Census Data Show New Jersey’s Median Age Highest
Ever and Increasing Diversity
May 23, 2001 – The median age of New Jersey’s population increased from 34.4 years
in 1990 to 36.7 years in 2000 according to the latest figures from
Census 2000, the state Labor Department’s State Data Center said today. The
increase reflects the aging of the baby boomers. However, the growth of the population aged 65 and over during the
past decade (7.8%) was slower than the total population (8.9%) in both the
state and the nation (12.0% for the over 65 and 13.2% for the total) due to the
relatively low number of births in the Great Depression era. The
national median age also increased 2.4 years, from 32.9 in 1990 to 35.3 in
According to the 2000 Census, Cape May surpassed
Ocean as the county with the oldest population in New Jersey with a median age
of 42.3 years. Ocean County’s median
age was 41.0 years. The slower increase
of Ocean County’s median age reflected a fast growing under-65-population in
the county. The number of persons under
65 years of age grew by a hefty 19.5 percent in Ocean County but just increased
by 7.5 percent in Cape May County during the 1990s. Hudson County was New Jersey’s youngest county with a median age
of 33.6 years.
The Census figures released today also
include the first population totals for selected groups of Asian and Hispanic
(or Latino) populations. Like the
nation, the state’s Hispanic (or Latino) population soared, led by a hefty 258
percent increase of Mexicans in the past decade. The number of Cubans living in New Jersey decreased by 9.4
percent during the same time period.
Puerto Ricans remained the largest Hispanic group in the state and
accounted for 32.8% of the state’s total Hispanic population in 2000. Mexican was the largest Latino group in the
nation as a whole, accounting for 58.5% of the nation’s total Hispanics in
The number of Mexicans more than quadrupled
in five New Jersey counties during the 1990s – Cumberland (+560%), Ocean
(+474%), Atlantic (+401%), Monmouth (+363%) and Middlesex (+335%). The largest increases of Mexicans occurred
in Passaic County (+14,669), Middlesex County (+10,980) and Hudson County (+7,912). These three counties accounted for 45.2
percent of the state’s total increase of Mexicans.
Among New Jersey’s Asians, Asian Indian was the
fastest growing group (+113%) during the 1990s, and continued to be the largest
group. Japanese was the only Asian
group to experience a decline (-15%) between 1990 and 2000. Consequently, Japanese became the smallest
Asian group in the state in 2000, surpassed by the fast growing Vietnamese
(+107%). Nationally, the number of
Asian Indians (+106%) also grew faster than any other Asian groups while the
number of Japanese (-6%) also declined.
However, Chinese was the largest Asian group in the nation as a whole,
followed by Filipinos and Asian Indians.
(Caution: Multiracial persons (about 2.5% of
New Jersey’s total residents) were excluded from this comparison.)
The number of Asian Indians more than doubled in
nine New Jersey counties. Middlesex
County had the largest gain of Asian Indians (+35,770), followed by Hudson
County (+8,934) and Bergen County (+8,082).
Together with Morris and Somerset Counties, these five counties
accounted for more than two-thirds (67.5%) of the state’s total Asian Indian
population as of April 1, 2000.
Besides the data
on age, race and ethnicity, the profile also contains data on sex, household
relationship and household type, housing units, vacancy status, and renters and
homeowners. The profile is available
for New Jersey and the state’s 21 counties and 566 municipalities on the
Internet by clicking on the Labor Market Information button on www.wnjpin.net
proportion of children under 18 years old increased in the state from
23.3% in 1990 to 24.8% in 2000. The 1.5 percentage point increase was the
second highest among the nation’s 50 states, next only to Connecticut’s
1.9 percentage point increase. The change was due largely to the influx of
foreign immigrants and the slow growth of the state’s adult
population. The number of persons
18 years old and over increased 6.7 percent in New Jersey (ranked 40th
in the nation) during the 1990s while the increase in Connecticut was a
mere 1.0% (ranked 50th in the nation).
- Ocean County
had the largest percentage of persons aged 65 and over (22.2%) in the
state in 2000, followed by Cape May (20.2%) and Bergen (15.2%)
counties. Ocean County’s senior
population (113,260) was second only to Bergen County (134,820) in terms
of size. Middlesex County added
the most persons 65 and over, growing by 13,773 from 1990 to 2000 to reach
a total of 92,590.
- The number of
nonfamily households grew substantially faster than family households
(17.7% vs. 6.6%) between 1990 and 2000 in New Jersey. The rate of growth in the nation was
22.8% and 11.3% for nonfamily and family households, respectively.
- The number of
nonfamily households grew by more than 30% in Sussex, Somerset, Burlington
and Ocean Counties. The rate of
growth in the state was 17.7%.
Somerset and Ocean Counties also had the fastest growth in family
households (+20.0% and +14.0%, respectively).
- The state’s
families headed by women with no husband present (+14.3%) increased more
than three times as fast as married-couple families (+3.8%) in the past
decade. The increase was 20.9% and
7.5% for the number of female-headed and married-couple families in the
Gloucester and Somerset counties’ female-headed households each grew by
25%. However, the proportions of
family households headed by a woman were still relatively low in these
counties. Married-couple households
declined in Cumberland (-5.5%), Salem (-5.2%), Camden (-4.0%), Essex
(-3.7%), Union (-3.1%), and Passaic (-0.6%) counties. The proportions of married-couple
families have been relatively low in these counties.
- New Jersey’s
average household size was 2.68 in 2000, down slightly from the 1990’s
2.70, but still larger than the national figure. Nationally, the average
household size was 2.63 and 2.59 in 1990 and 2000, respectively.
- The reduction
in the average household size was most evident in Burlington (from 2.79 to
2.65), Gloucester (from 2.87 to 2.75) and Sussex (from 2.91 to 2.80)
counties. Five counties with large
volumes of recent foreign immigrants increased their average household
sizes in the past decade: Passaic (+.07), Union (+.06), Atlantic (+.03),
Middlesex (+.03) and Somerset (+.02).
- Of the more
than three million occupied housing units in 2000, approximately two
million were occupied by owners and another one million by renters. The state’s homeownership rate
increased from 64.9 percent in 1990 to 65.6 percent in 2000. The national homeownership rates were
64.2 percent and 66.2 percent in 1990 and 2000, respectively.
rates were highest in Hunterdon (83.6%), Ocean (83.2%) and Sussex (82.7%)
counties. These counties also had
high proportion of non-Hispanic white residents who tend to have higher
homeownership rates than their nonwhite and Hispanic counterparts.
vacancy rates decreased in the state during the 1990s, from 9.1 percent in
1990 to 7.4 percent in 2000. The
decrease/increase of vacancy rates varied among counties, ranging from a
4.9 percentage point decline in Hudson County (from 9.1% to 4.2%) to a 1.0
percentage point increase in Camden County (from 6.0% to 7.0%).
- Essex, Mercer
and Middlesex Counties led the state in group quarters population in
2000. Essex County had the largest
institutionalized population while large college campuses in Mercer and
Middlesex counties made up most of their group quarters populations. Cumberland County’s group quarters population
showed the largest percentage gain (85.9%) from 1990 to 2000, adding 5,700
persons – a reflection of the opening of new state and federal
correctional institutions in the county during the 1990s.
- The state’s
largest Hispanic group – Puerto Rican had moderate growth (+14.6%) in New
Jersey during the 1990s.
Substantial growth of Puerto Ricans was observed in Middlesex,
Camden, Bergen and Union counties.
These four counties accounted for 46.1 percent of the state’s total
increase of 46,655 Puerto Rican residents from 1990 to 2000. Hudson, Essex, Passaic, Middlesex and
Camden counties had the majority (65.4%) of the state’s Puerto Ricans in
1990. They still had 60.3 percent
of the state’s Puerto Ricans as of 2000.
- The number of
Cubans declined by 8,041 in New Jersey from 1990 to 2000. The most substantial declines occurred
in Hudson (-10,214), Union (-2,253) and Essex (-1,002) counties. However, Bergen County had a net gain
of 2,397 Cubans in the 1990s. More
than three of every four (76.5%) of New Jersey’s Cubans resided in these
four counties as of 2000. They had
82.2 percent of the state’s total Cuban population in 1990.
- Chinese was
the second largest Asian group in New Jersey. The number of Chinese more than doubled in three New Jersey
counties – Atlantic (+129%), Somerset (+128%) and Middlesex (+103%). Middlesex County also had the largest
gain of Chinese (+11,147) during the 1990s, followed by Bergen (+5,178)
and Somerset (+4,569) counties.
More than three in every five (62.8%) of New Jersey’s Chinese
population resided in Middlesex, Bergen, Morris, Monmouth and Somerset
counties as of April 1, 2000.
- The number of
Filipinos more than doubled in three New Jersey counties in the past
decade – Hunterdon (+174%), Atlantic (+118%) and Sussex (+107%) from
relatively small bases. More than
two-thirds (68.8%) of the state’s Filipino population resided in Hudson,
Bergen, Middlesex, Essex and Union counties, according to the 2000 Census.
- Japanese was
the sole declining Asian group in New Jersey. New Jersey’s Japanese population decreased by 2,581 during
the 1990s. Bergen County alone
experienced a net loss of 2,528 Japanese.
However, with 7,662 Japanese residents, Bergen County still had
more than one-half (52.2%) of the state’s total Japanese population in
- The number of
Korean residents more than doubled in Bergen County (+20,002 or 124%)
during the 1990s. Consequently,
Bergen County alone accounted for more than one in every two (55.2%)
Korean residents in the state in 2000.
was the second fastest growing group in the past decade, next only to
Asian Indian, among the state’s Asians.
The number of Vietnamese more than doubled in five New Jersey
counties – Warren (+268%), Camden (+221%), Atlantic (+205%), Ocean (+151%)
and Middlesex (+125%) from 1990 to 2000.
The majority of the state’s Vietnamese population (61.9%) was
concentrated in four counties – Camden, Atlantic, Middlesex and Hudson as
more information, please contact David Joye or Sen-Yuan Wu at (609)292-0076 or firstname.lastname@example.org.