Special Report

The States That Had More Deaths Than Births in 2021

Thomas Northcut / Photodisc via Getty Images

The U.S. population grew at the slowest pace in its history in 2021, according to the Census Bureau. Estimates released late December 2021 show that the population grew by only 0.1%, in large part due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The population can grow by two means — migration and natural change. Figures released late March show that half of all states — and nearly three-quarters of all counties — experienced more deaths than births between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, meaning a natural decrease. 

The Census notes that the likely cause is the COVID-19 pandemic. The greatest number of states that experienced a natural decrease in the previous decade was eight, in the 2019-2020 period, which already included a few months of the pandemic. Previously four or less states experienced a natural decrease in a single year.

As for other longer-term trends, births in most states had been declining since 2016. Between 2020 and 2021, however, all states experienced a drop in births.

To identify the 25 states that experienced more deaths than births, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed U.S. Census Bureau data on state populations and the components leading to population changes from July 1, 2020 to July 1, 2021. All data came from the census.

The region with the most widespread natural decrease is the Northeast, with seven of nine Northeastern states experiencing more deaths than births in 2021. Meanwhile, in the West, only three out of 13 states experienced natural decrease. 

Not all states with a natural decrease experienced overall population decline. The population declined in just eight of the 25 states that experienced more deaths than births, as they benefited from positive net migration. In fact, Delaware and Montana are listed among the top five states where population has grown the most since the pandemic.

And in Florida, the state with the largest decline due to natural change, the population increased by nearly 1%. While there were only 210,000 births compared to 255,0000 deaths, contributing to a 45,000 population decline due to natural changes, Florida’s population grew from 21.57 million to 21.78 million as the Sunshine State has been attracting new residents. (Florida is also projected to be among the top five states that will grow the most in the next 20 years.)

Click here to see the states that had more deaths than births in 2021

Source: JannHuizenga / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images

25. New Mexico
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -1,086 (births: 21,996, deaths: 23,082)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 2,117,566 — 15th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 2,115,877 — 15th lowest
> Overall population growth: -0.08% — 15th lowest

[in-text-ad]

Source: jjwithers / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images

24. Delaware
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -1,344 (births: 10,311, deaths: 11,655)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 991,886 — 6th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 1,003,384 — 6th lowest
> Overall population growth: 1.16% — 6th highest

Source: Bkamprath / E+ via Getty Images

23. Montana
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -1,520 (births: 10,502, deaths: 12,022)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 1,086,193 — 7th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 1,104,271 — 8th lowest
> Overall population growth: 1.66% — 3rd highest

Source: Kruck20 / iStock via Getty Images

22. North Carolina
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -1,698 (births: 114,011, deaths: 115,709)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 10,457,177 — 9th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 10,551,162 — 9th highest
> Overall population growth: 0.90% — 11th highest

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: ErikaMitchell / iStock Editorial via Getty Images

21. Vermont
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -1,827 (births: 5,057, deaths: 6,884)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 642,495 — the lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 645,570 — the lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.48% — 18th highest

Source: Majestic_Aerials / iStock via Getty Images

20. Oklahoma
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -1,870 (births: 47,125, deaths: 48,995)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 3,962,031 — 23rd lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 3,986,639 — 23rd lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.62% — 16th highest

[in-text-ad]

Source: Image Source / Image Source via Getty Images

19. Rhode Island
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -2,250 (births: 9,717, deaths: 11,967)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 1,096,229 — 8th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 1,095,610 — 7th lowest
> Overall population growth: -0.06% — 16th lowest

Source: JamesBrey / E+ via Getty Images

18. Wisconsin
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -2,581 (births: 60,404, deaths: 62,985)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 5,892,323 — 20th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 5,895,908 — 20th highest
> Overall population growth: 0.06% — 20th lowest

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images

17. Arkansas
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -3,236 (births: 35,021, deaths: 38,257)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 3,012,232 — 18th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 3,025,891 — 18th lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.45% — 19th highest

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: peeterv / iStock via Getty Images

16. Mississippi
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -3,237 (births: 34,957, deaths: 38,194)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 2,956,870 — 17th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 2,949,965 — 17th lowest
> Overall population growth: -0.23% — 9th lowest

Source: DenisTangneyJr / E+ via Getty Images

15. New Hampshire
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -3,744 (births: 11,414, deaths: 15,158)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 1,377,848 — 10th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 1,388,992 — 10th lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.81% — 12th highest

[in-text-ad]

Source: shunyufan / E+ via Getty Images

14. Massachusetts
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -4,234 (births: 66,197, deaths: 70,431)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 7,022,220 — 15th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 6,984,723 — 15th highest
> Overall population growth: -0.53% — 6th lowest

Source: eyecrave / E+ via Getty Images

13. Missouri
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -4,515 (births: 68,818, deaths: 73,333)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 6,154,481 — 19th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 6,168,187 — 18th highest
> Overall population growth: 0.22% — 24th highest

Source: benedek / iStock via Getty Images

12. Oregon
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -4,715 (births: 39,877, deaths: 44,592)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 4,241,544 — 24th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 4,246,155 — 24th lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.11% — 21st lowest

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images

11. Connecticut
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -4,975 (births: 32,671, deaths: 37,646)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 3,600,260 — 22nd lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 3,605,597 — 22nd lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.15% — 25th highest

Source: ChrisBoswell / iStock via Getty Images

10. Kentucky
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -6,128 (births: 50,725, deaths: 56,853)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 4,503,958 — 25th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 4,509,394 — 25th lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.12% — 24th lowest

[in-text-ad]

Source: SeanPavonePhoto / iStock via Getty Images

9. Maine
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -6,344 (births: 11,291, deaths: 17,635)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 1,362,280 — 9th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 1,372,247 — 9th lowest
> Overall population growth: 0.73% — 14th highest

Source: Joel Carillet / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images

8. Tennessee
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -7,591 (births: 77,353, deaths: 84,944)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 6,920,119 — 16th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 6,975,218 — 16th highest
> Overall population growth: 0.80% — 13th highest

Source: Thomas Northcut / Photodisc via Getty Images

7. South Carolina
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -7,807 (births: 54,713, deaths: 62,520)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 5,130,729 — 23rd highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 5,190,705 — 23rd highest
> Overall population growth: 1.17% — 5th highest

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: ablokhin / iStock Editorial via Getty Images

6. Alabama
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -8,548 (births: 56,320, deaths: 64,868)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 5,024,803 — 24th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 5,039,877 — 24th highest
> Overall population growth: 0.30% — 20th highest

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images

5. West Virginia
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -9,870 (births: 17,232, deaths: 27,102)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 1,789,798 — 12th lowest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 1,782,959 — 12th lowest
> Overall population growth: -0.38% — 8th lowest

[in-text-ad]

Source: pabradyphoto / iStock via Getty Images

4. Michigan
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -14,353 (births: 102,983, deaths: 117,336)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 10,067,664 — 10th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 10,050,811 — 10th highest
> Overall population growth: -0.17% — 11th lowest

Source: PapaBear / iStock Editorial via Getty Images

3. Ohio
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -15,811 (births: 128,595, deaths: 144,406)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 11,790,587 — 7th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 11,780,017 — 7th highest
> Overall population growth: -0.09% — 14th lowest

Source: WilliamSherman / iStock via Getty Images

2. Pennsylvania
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -30,878 (births: 128,351, deaths: 159,229)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 12,989,625 — 5th highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 12,964,056 — 5th highest
> Overall population growth: -0.20% — 10th lowest

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: Kruck20 / iStock via Getty Images

1. Florida
> Natural population decrease, 12 months through July 2021: -45,248 (births: 210,305, deaths: 255,553)
> Total population: July 1, 2020 21,569,932 — 3rd highest
> Total population: July 1, 2021 21,781,128 — 3rd highest
> Overall population growth: 0.98% — 8th highest

Smart Investors Are Quietly Loading Up on These “Dividend Legends”

If you want your portfolio to pay you cash like clockwork, it’s time to stop blindly following conventional wisdom like relying on Dividend Aristocrats. There’s a better option, and we want to show you. We’re offering a brand-new report on 2 stocks we believe offer the rare combination of a high dividend yield and significant stock appreciation upside. If you’re tired of feeling one step behind in this market, this free report is a must-read for you.

Click here to download your FREE copy of “2 Dividend Legends to Hold Forever” and start improving your portfolio today.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us?
Contact the 24/7 Wall St. editorial team.