What are the most populated states in the United States? Here is a list of the top ten most populated states in the country:
- California (Population: 39,613,493)
- Texas (Population: 29,730,311)
- Florida (Population: 21,944,577)
- New York (Population: 19,299,981)
- Pennsylvania (Population: 12,804,123)
- Illinois (Population: 12,569,321)
- Ohio (Population: 11,714,618)
- Georgia (Population: 10,830,007)
- North Carolina (Population: 10,701,022)
- Michigan (Population: 9,992,427)
And what about least populated? What are the least populated states in the United States? Here is a list of the top ten least populated states in the country:
- Wyoming (Population: 581,075)
- Vermont (Population: 623,251)
- District of Columbia (Population: 714,153)
- Alaska (Population: 724,357)
- North Dakota (Population: 770,026)
- South Dakota (Population: 896,581)
- Delaware (Population: 990,334)
- Rhode Island (Population: 1,061,509)
- Montana (Population: 1,085,004)
- Maine (Population: 1,354,522)
As of spring 2021, the population of the United States is approximately 331,449,281. This population is distributed unevenly across 50 states. Generally, states that are around the country’s border – West Coast, East Coast, and southern states – are the most populous. States that are more interior, such as those in the Great Plains and Midwest, tend to be less populous. However, there are some exceptions, such as Illinois, which is in the Midwest but has a high population, mainly centered in the Chicago area.
By far, the most populous state in the United States is California. It has nearly 40 million residents, comprising a whopping 12% of the country’s population. If California were a country, it would have the eighth largest economy in the world and the 36th highest population!
Next in line is Texas, which has about 29.7 million residents; however, Texas has a growth rate of 3.85% per year, while California’s growth rate is a fraction of that at 0.38%. Since 2010, the population of Texas has increased by over 15%! After California and Texas comes Florida, with a population of about 21.9 million. It is also growing rapidly, with a growth rate of 3.30% per year.
New York is the fourth most populous in the country. Out of a population of 20 million, about half of its residents live in New York City. States in New England, along the Northeast seaboard, tend to be quite small geographically but with higher populations. Rhode Island is the smallest state by land mass, but it has a higher population than many larger states, including Alaska (the largest state by land mass), Montana, and Wyoming. Montana, though it has a vastly larger land mass than Rhode Island, has 10,000 fewer residents.
The smallest state by population is Wyoming, with fewer than 600,000 residents and a negative growth rate of 0.60% per year. Other states with negative population growths include Louisiana, Connecticut, Kansas, West Virginia, Hawaii, and Alaska. Surprisingly, despite the presence of the massive cities of New York City and Chicago, both New York and Illinois are experiencing negative population growths. Puerto Rico is not a state, but it is also experiencing negative population growth.
Most states are currently experiencing population growth, the greatest of which can be seen in Idaho, at 6.26%. Nevada and Arizona also have high population growth this year, at 5.23% and 5.06%, respectively.
Please note that the numbers in this article may be slightly different from the most recent projections in the table below or elsewhere, as they are only updated every so often.