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Population and Labor Force Projections

For New Jersey: 2004—2025


by the Sen-Yuan Wu, Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research

N ew Jersey has had slower population growth than the nation as a whole since the rise
of the Sunbelt in the 1970s. The state will continue to lag behind the nation as a
whole in the rate of population growth. New Jersey’s total population is projected to increase
by 5.8 percent (or 0.56% per annum) from 8,685,200 in 2004 to 9,188,200 in 2014. The
nation’s population growth rate will be about 0.9 percent per annum between 2004 and 2014,
according to US Census Bureau projections.1

The state’s rate of population growth was about 0.75 percent per annum between 2000
and 2004, and 0.85 percent per annum during the 1990s. The population of the nation as a
whole grew by 1.0 percent per annum and 1.2 percent per annum during the 2000-2004 and
1990-2000 periods, respectively.

New Jersey’s population is projected to continue to grow at about 0.6 percent per annum
between 2014 and 2025. The state will have 9,817,400 residents by July 1, 2025.

Natural increment will be the major source of population growth

Job Vacancies by Experience Requirement


Table 1 Natural increment (surplus of births
Total Population of New Jersey over deaths) accounted for 63 percent
and United States: 1900 - 2025 (about 41,800 per year, on average) of New
Jersey’s 2000-2004 total population growth.
Annualized Growth
Population Rate (Percent) As American’s longevity continues to in-
Year New Jersey United States New Jersey United States crease and the fertility rate of American
Census women remains relatively high among in-
1900 1,883,669 76,212,168 --- --- dustrialized nations, natural increment is
1910 2,537,167 92,228,496 3.02 1.93 projected to continue to be the major source
1920 3,155,900 106,021,537 2.21 1.40 of New Jersey’s population growth.
1930 4,041,334 123,202,624 2.50 1.51
1940 4,160,165 132,164,569 0.29 0.70 The other 37 percent (approximately
1950 4,835,329 151,325,798 1.52 1.36
24,700 per year, on average) of the state’s
1960 6,066,782 179,323,175 2.29 1.71
2000-2004 population growth was the net
1970 7,171,112 203,302,031 1.69 1.26
gain from migration (including interna-
1980 7,365,011 226,545,805 0.27 1.09
1990 7,730,188 248,709,873 0.49 0.94
tional and domestic migrations). However,
2000 8,414,350 281,421,906 0.85 1.24 according to the US Census Bureau’s recent
Estimates population estimates, the influx of foreign
2004 8,685,166 293,656,842 0.75 1.01 immigrants to New Jersey (international
Projections migration) is dwindling gradually while the
2009 8,903,300 306,272,000 0.50 0.84
outflow of New Jersey residents to other US
2014 9,188,200 319,668,000 0.63 0.86 states (domestic migration) has continued
2020 9,523,500 335,805,000 0.60 0.82 to rise.
2025 9,817,400 349,439,000 0.61 0.80
Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Net migration (about 7,500 per year,
Development, Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research.
on average) is projected to account for just
Chart 1
Components of New Jersey’s 15 percent of the state’s total
population growth from 2004 to
Population Change: 2000 - 2025
2014, a continuation of recent
trends. As most baby boomers are
2014-2025 75.2% 24.8%
expected to retire during the
2014-2025 period, more mi-
2004-2014 85.2% 14.8% grants will be needed to sustain
the state’s continuing economic
and employment growth. Conse-
2000-2004 62.9% 37.1% quently, the share of the projected
net migration component (about
0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
14,200 per year, on average) will
Natural Increment Net Migration increase to 25 percent during the
Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development,
2014-2025 period.
Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research.

The “other races” population will continue to grow the fastest

New Jersey has been one of the major destinations of Asian and Pacific immigrants in
the nation since the 1970s. Persons of “other races” (who are primarily Asian in New Jersey,
but also include American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander)
have increased substantially in New Jersey during the past three decades. They are projected
to continue to increase considerably faster than their white and black counterparts from 2004
to 2014. Consequently, the “other races” category will comprise almost 10 percent of the
state’s total population by 2014, up
Table 2
from 7.4 percent in 2004, while the
share of whites will shrink to 74 Racial/Ethnic Composition of
percent by 2014, down from 77 New Jersey Population: 1990 - 2025
percent in 2004. The proportion Census on April 1, Estimate Projections to July 1,
of New Jersey’s population who are Race/Ethnicity 1990 2000 2004 2014 2025
black or African American is pro- All Races 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
jected to increase fractionally from White 82.3% 78.3% 76.9% 74.2% 71.7%
14.5 percent in 2004 to 14.6 per- Black 13.9% 14.4% 14.5% 14.6% 14.5%
cent in 2014. The multiracial popu- Other Races 3.8% 6.2% 7.4% 9.6% 11.6%
lation (persons who reported two Multiracial — 1.1% 1.2% 1.6% 2.2%

or more races in the 2000 census) Hispanic 9.7% 13.3% 14.9% 18.2% 21.4%
will account for 1.6 percent of New White, Non-Hispanic 73.9% 66.6% 63.8% 58.1% 53.0%

Jersey’s total population by 2014 Note: “Other Races” includes American Indian and Alaska Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian and
other Pacific Islander. “Multiracial” refers to persons of two or more races. Hispanic origin is
compared to 1.2 percent in 2004. not a race, persons of hispanic origin may be of any race.
Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development,
Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research.
The share of the state’s “other
races” population will increase to
about 12 percent by 2025 while the white’s share will shrink to less than 72 percent by then.
The multiracial persons’ share is also projected to increase from 2014 (1.6%) to 2025 (2.2%).

Hispanic population growth will continue to outpace non-Hispanic

Latinos or persons of Hispanic origin (who may be of any race) accounted for 62 percent
of New Jersey’s 2000-2004 population growth. They are projected to continue to increase
substantially in New Jersey due to a large influx of immigrants from Latin America and rela-
tively high fertility rates of Hispanic women. Hispanics have outnumbered blacks (or African
Americans, which include both Hispanic blacks and non-Hispanic blacks) and became the
state’s largest minority group earlier this decade. They will comprise 76 percent of the state’s
2004-2014 population increase and account for 18.2 percent of the state’s total population in
2014, compared with 14.6 percent for African Americans. In 2004, the Hispanic and African
American shares of New Jersey’s population were 14.9 percent and 14.5 percent, respectively.

More than one in every five (21.4%) New Jerseyans will be persons of Hispanic origin by
2025. In contrast, the state’s share of white, non-Hispanic population will diminish to 53
percent by 2025, from 63.8 percent in 2004.

Age groups 50+ and 20-39 yrs. old are projected to grow substanially

As the “baby boomers” (persons born between 1946 and 1964) age, the population 50
years old and over will increase substantially during the projection years. The “baby boomers”
have been the state’s largest birth cohort since the 1960s. They accounted for 31 percent and 29
percent of the state’s total population, respectively, in 1990 and 2000. However, they are pro-
jected to be outnumbered by their children’s generation — the “baby boom echo” cohort
(children of the “baby boomers” — mostly born between 1977 and 1994). By 2025, the “baby
boom echo” cohort will comprise 23.7 percent of New Jersey residents while the share of
“baby boomers” will shrink to 18.5 percent.

New Jersey’s primary school age population (5 to 13 years old) increased substantially
(2.1% per annum) during the 1990s due to the entrance of the “baby boom echo” cohort.
The same force drove a hefty growth (2.3% per annum) of the secondary school age popula-
tion (14-17 years old) between 2000 and 2004. The expansion of the state’s school age
population is projected to slow down to about 0.2 percent per year, on average, from 2004

Table 3
New Jersey Population by
Age Group: 1990 - 2025
Census on April 1, Estimate Projections to July 1,
Age Group 1990 2000 2004 2014 2025

Total 7,747,750 8,414,350 8,685,200 9,188,200 9,817,400

Under 5 547,600 563,800 580,600 594,500 641,100


5 to 13 878,300 1,077,000 1,084,900 1,107,600 1,131,600
14 to 17 403,000 433,200 477,600 489,300 509,400
18 to 24 778,400 690,200 752,400 861,300 890,000
25 to 34 1,364,800 1,189,000 1,093,300 1,169,900 1,331,900
35 to 49 1,656,800 2,046,500 2,103,600 1,874,000 1,845,300
50 to 64 1,093,300 1,301,500 1,468,500 1,790,500 1,787,600
65 & Over 1,025,500 1,113,100 1,124,400 1,301,000 1,680,500

Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of Labor Market &
Demographic Research.
Chart 2
to 2025 when the children of the
New Jersey Population by Age: 2004 and 2014
“baby bust”2 cohort will be the
major source of the school age 85+
80-84
children. 75-79
70-74

The elderly population (per- 65-69


60-64
sons 65 years old and over) is pro- 55-59

jected to accelerate its growth rate 50-54


45-49
during the projection years, reflect- 40-44
ing the aging of “baby boomers.” 35-39
30-34
(The youngest “baby boomers” 25-29
will be 61 years old by 2025). At 20-24

1.5 percent and 2.4 percent annual 15-19


10-14
growth rates during the 2004-2014 5-9
and 2014-2025 periods, respec- 0-4

tively, the state’s senior citizens will 800,000 600,000 400,000 200,000 0 200,000 400,000 600,000 800,000

grow significantly faster than their 2004 2014

younger counterpart. Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development,
Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research.

New Jersey’s sex ratio is projected to increase gradually

Table 4
Women outnumber their male counter-
Sex Ratio, Number of Males per 100
parts in New Jersey. The state’s sex ratio (num-
Females, New Jersey: 1980 - 2025 ber of males per 100 females) was 92.2, 93.5
Male Female Sex and 94.3 according to the 1980, 1990 and
Year Population Population Ratio
2000 Censuses. As the life expectancy of males
1980 3,533,012 3,831,811 92.2 is expected to continue to edge closer to that
1990 3,744,728 4,003,022 93.5 of females, the male population is projected
2000 4,082,813 4,331,537 94.3
to grow at a pace slightly faster than its fe-
2004 4,229,200 4,456,000 94.9
male counterpart in New Jersey in the 21st
2014 4,480,400 4,707,800 95.2 century. Consequently, the state’s sex ratio is
2025 4,793,600 5,023,800 95.4
projected to continue to increase to 95.2 by
Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Work-
force Development, Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research. 2014, and 95.4 by 2025.

Civilian labor force is projected to grow faster than the population

The rate of New Jersey’s civilian labor force growth was triple its population growth rate
during the 1980s when the “baby boomers” entered the labor market en masse. The state’s
labor force growth was slower than its population growth between 1990 and 2004 when
“baby bust” generation was the major source of new entrants to the labor market. As the
“baby boom echo” generation starts to dominate the nation’s labor force, New Jersey’s labor
force growth will outpace its population growth again, during the 2004-2025 period.

The civilian labor force is projected to increase by 6.8 percent (or 0.66% per annum) in
New Jersey, from 4,388,000 in 2004 to 4,687,200 in 2014. A 5.8 percent (or 0.56% per an-
num) growth of population is projected for New Jersey for the same ten-year period. The
state’s population will increase by another 6.8 percent (or 0.60% per annum) from 2014 to
2025 while its labor force will grow by 7.3 percent (or 0.64% per annum).
New Jersey’s “younger workers” pool (labor Table 5
force under 35 years of age) shrank while the “prime Changes in Population and Labor
age” group (labor force 35-54 years of age) expanded Force, New Jersey: 1980 - 2025
during the 1990s as matured “baby boomers” were
succeeded by the smaller “baby bust” cohort. As the Year Population Labor Force
“baby boomers” continue to age, the “older work- 1980 7,365,011 3,523,255
ers” (labor force 55 years or older) is projected to be 1990 7,747,750 4,104,700
the fastest growing labor group during the projec- 2004 8,685,166 4,388,000
tion years. The share of “older workers” in the state’s 2014 9,188,200 4,687,200
labor force is projected to increase to 21.7 percent 2025 9,817,400 5,029,700
by 2014 from 15 percent in 2000. By 2025, almost Annual Growth Rate
one in every four New Jersey workers will be an 1980 - 1990 0.51% 1.54%
“older worker.” 1990 - 2004 0.80% 0.47%
2004 - 2014 0.56% 0.66%
The declining 25-34 and 35-44 age groups in 2014 - 2025 0.60% 0.64%
the state’s labor force will turnaround during the Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor
and Workforce Development, Division of Labor Market &
2004-2014 and 2014-2025 periods, respectively, as the Demographic Research.
“baby boom echo” group ages into these categories.

Table 6

New Jersey Civilian Labor Force


by Age Group: 1990 - 2025
Census on April 1, Estimate Projections to July 1,
Age Group 1990 2000 2004 2014 2025

Total 4,104,700 4,193,100 4,388,000 4,687,200 5,029,700

16 to 24 643,400 538,700 584,200 649,100 679,300


25 to 34 1,132,100 924,900 863,300 939,700 1,104,300
35 to 44 1,009,900 1,162,300 1,134,600 948,300 1,043,900
45 to 54 705,300 936,600 1,056,600 1,135,000 976,500
55 to 64 461,100 474,100 601,700 784,500 886,300
65+ 152,900 156,600 147,600 230,600 339,500

55 & over 614,000 630,700 749,300 1,015,100 1,225,800


Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of
Labor Market & Demographic Research.

Hispanics and “other races” will account for most of labor force growth

New Jersey’s Hispanic and “other races” (mainly Asians) labor forces have grown sub-
stantially faster than their non-Hispanic and white or black counterparts in 1980s and 1990s.
They are projected to continue to lead the state’s labor force growth, parallel to the projected
population growth trend. Persons of “other races” will account for 41 percent and 40 percent,
respectively, of the state’s labor force growth during the 2004-2014 and 2014-2025 periods.
Hispanics will comprise the majority of the state’s labor force growth – 66 percent of the 2004-
2014 growth and 70 percent of the 2014-2025 growth. The number of white, non-Hispanics in
the state’s labor force is projected to decline gradually between 2004 and 2025.
Table 7
Consequently, 76.1 percent of
Labor Force Growth by Sex, Race and the state’s labor force will be white by
Hispanic Origin New Jersey: 1990 - 2025 2014, down from 79 percent in 2004
and 83 percent in 1990 while the
Share of Labor Force Growth
Category 1990-2004 2004-2014 2014-2025
“other races” share will increase from
7.0 percent in 2004 to 9.2 percent and
Total Change 283,300 299,200 342,500
Percent Distribution 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 11.3 percent in 2014 and 2025, respec-
tively. The Hispanic share of the state’s
Male 43.7% 43.8% 49.9%
Female 56.3% 56.3% 50.1% labor force will be elevated from 14.3
percent in 2004 to 17.6 percent in
White 13.8% 35.5% 37.1%
Black 19.2% 17.3% 15.9% 2014 and 21.2 percent in 2025.
Multiracial 54.3% 41.3% 40.0%
Other Races — 5.9% 7.1% Women dominated the state’s
Hispanic 89.2% 66.2% 69.6% labor force growth during the 1980s
Note: “Other Races” includes American Indian and Alaska Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian
and 1990s. They will still account for
and other Pacific Islander. “Multiracial” refers to persons of two or more races. His- about 56.3 percent of New Jersey’s
panic origin is not a race, persons of hispanic origin may be of any race.
Source: US Bureau of the Census and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce
labor force growth in the 2004-2014
Development, Division of Labor Market & Demographic Research. period due to their increasing labor
force participation rates. Despite the
increasing sex ratio in the projected New Jersey population, the state’s labor force growth
between 2014 and 2025 will be about evenly split between men (49.9%) and women
(50.1%). Accordingly, female’s share of New Jersey’s labor force will increase gradually from
46.6 percent in 2004 to 47.2 percent and 47.4 percent in 2014 and 2025, respectively.

About the Projections

The 2004-2025 population and labor force projections were recently developed by
the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of Labor Mar-
ket and Demographic Research as part of the department's economic and demographic
projections series. Projections include employment by industry; employment by occupa-
tion; population by age-race-sex and Hispanic origin; and civilian labor force by age-race-
sex and Hispanic origin. These projections share input data and assumptions and are there-
fore consistent with each other. These data supersede all projections previously issued by
this department.

The race and Hispanic origin groups included in the projections are white non-His-
panic, white Hispanic, black (or African American), “other races”, multiracial (two or more
races) and total Hispanics (or Latinos). The “other races” include Asian, American Indian
and Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander. Hispanic origin is not a
race. Persons of Hispanic origin may be of any race. The race categories used in the projec-
tions are consistent with the US Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) 1997 Directive.
Unlike decennial censuses where an unspecified “some other races” category was allowed,
every person has to belong to one or more of the five specified race categories — White,
Black, Asian, American Indian and Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Is-
lander — according to the OMB directive.

In the projections, data by the same racial and ethnic groups were tabulated for both
population and labor force. However, labor force is divided into seven age groups while
population consists of 18 age groups. Because of rounding, there may be small discrepan-
cies between projection distributions and totals.
The Economic-Demographic Model was used in preparing population and labor force
projections due to its great scope of the input information (includes both economic and
demographic data) and its consistency with the employment projections, which were de-
veloped as a part of this department’s Projections 2014 Series. The state’s population was
also projected based on three additional projection models — Historical Migration Model,
Zero Migration Model and Linear Regression Mode — for illustrative and comparative pur-
poses. Projections based on those models are not presented in this article although they are
available upon request.

The numbers presented are projections, not forecasts or predictions. A projection is


the measurement of a future condition that would exist if the assumptions and procedures
of the method proved to be empirically valid in the future. Projections may assume con-
tinuation of past conditions, present conditions or trended changes in historical condi-
tions. They may also assume entirely new growth rates. Given the method and the assump-
tions, a projection is always correct if the operations of the projection method are carried
out without error. The number of possible projections for any given population is therefore
infinite. A forecast, on the other hand, is a projection that is also a judgmental statement
concerning the expected measurement of future conditions; it is a prediction. All forecasts
are projections, but not all projections are forecasts. Again, we prepared projections, not
forecasts.3

The projections prepared by this department are not “policy” projections and should
not be interpreted as goal or policy oriented. They are not intended to constrain or to advo-
cate specific levels of growth in the state. All projections are presented as baseline, that is,
independent of exogenous public or private interventionist activities of an unusual, unfore-
seen, or undocumented nature or magnitude. They are based primarily on identifiable de-
mographic and economic secular trends which have been implicitly or explicitly incorpo-
rated into the models. The greatest value of the projections is as a reference framework for
planning, research, program evaluation and considerations for alternative growth scenarios
which could be achieved through greater or less resource development.

Data Availability

The Population and Labor Force Projections for New Jersey: 2004 to 2025 including
detailed data tables and methodology descriptions are available on the Labor Planning and
Analysis Web site http://www.nj.gov/labor/lra. For more information about population
projections for New Jersey, contact the New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Devel-
opment, Division of Labor Market and Demographic Research, PO Box 388, Trenton, NJ
08625-0388. Telephone: (609) 292-0076 or e-mail: Sen-Yuan.Wu@dol.state.nj.us.

Footnotes:
1. US Bureau of the Census: "U.S. Interim Projections by Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin," March 2004.

2. The “baby bust” cohort (also known as the “generation x”) refers to persons born between 1965 and 1976.

3. Donald B. Pittenger, Projecting State and Local Populations (Cambridge, MA: Ballinger Publishing Co., 1976) and Richard E.
Klosterman, Community Analysis Planning Techniques (Savage, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 1990).