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Articles: US Micronesians Compared to US Total Population in Survey Summary

Contributed by YokweOnline on Jul 13, 2010 - 01:31 PM

US Micronesians Compared to US Total Population in Survey Summary

Micronesians in the United States are a younger population than the general public with three-fourths native to the United States. A recent U.S. census survey estimates that of the foreign-born Micronesian population, 52 percent entered the U.S. in 2000 or later.

The American Community Survey (ACS), an on-going sampling replacing the Census long-form, puts the Micronesian population at 159,403 out of the general U.S population of 301,237,703.

According to David Huskins, a geographer who works for U.S. Census Bureau in verifying and correcting mapped information for the ACS, the Micronesian data profile includes Marshallese, Chamorros, those from the Federated States of Micronesia, and a smattering of others.

Huskins was surprised that the newest release did not contain enough data from Arkansas and Utah, which are both home to large migrant communities. As the data is limited to locations and ethnic groups which have a large enough sample, information on Micronesian respondents was only available as a U.S. total and for Hawaii and California.

"As more people respond to the ACS, other locations (Arkansas, Oregon, Utah) will be added to the roster of available locations," said Huskins, who has been reporting population-trends to Yokwe Online for the past eight years.

Using the 2006-2008 ACS 3-Year Estimates, Huskins extracted the data-set of people who are all or part Micronesian and compared selected profile data with the U.S. total. Huskins cautioned that the following summaries are meant as brief illustrations of trends noted in the data, therefore the data itself should be consulted for more complete information.


Ethnicity and age:

About one quarter of Micronesians are multiracial, while, outside of Hawaii, barely 2% of other Americans are. [This information is reported by the respondent and is also an undercount as a number of ethnic groups of mixed heritage tend to not self-identify as multiracial.]

Micronesians are a younger population, with a average age of over 10 years younger than that of the general American population. This is especially true in Hawaii, but somewhat less so in California.

Family Composition:

Compared to the population as a whole, more Micronesians live in families, as opposed to with room mates or alone. However the proportion of married households is not any higher. Fewer Micronesians age 15+ are married, widowed or divorced. This is somewhat expected as the population is generally younger.

A greater proportion of the people in Micronesian households are children or non-relatives, as opposed to married spouses, and households are usually larger.


About 5.9% of women in the U.S. age 15-50 gave birth in the prior year, while about 7.7% of Micronesian women of the same age did.

Far more of the new Micronesian mothers were unmarried, and this was especially notable in Hawaii.

More Micronesians over 30 are living with grandchildren, particularly in Hawaii. A large proportion of grandparents, over 40% of both Micronesians and the general population, help care for their grandchildren.

Education and employment:

Fewer Micronesians age 25+ have finished high school and far fewer have completed college.

The proportion of Micronesians who are military veterans is close to that of the general population. Compared to the general population, a greater proportion of Micronesians age 16+ work or are in the military.

Micronesians are more concentrated in service sector jobs than the general population. This is especially true for Hawaii.

Income and poverty:

The average (median) household income for Micronesians is comparable to the general population at a national level. Across all household categories, Micronesians enjoy a higher household income than the general population in California, but a lower income in Hawaii.

Please remember that household income includes all people contributing and Micronesians typically live in households with more people. Overall income per person shows that Micronesians lag behind the general population, particularly in Hawaii.

The poverty rate for Micronesians is somewhat higher than the general population. In California the difference is small, but in Hawaii it is much greater. Nearly 18% of all Micronesians in the U.S. live in poverty, compared to just over 13% of the general population. In California, the poverty rates are comparable, but in Hawaii, Micronesians have nearly three times the poverty rates of the general population across all categories except the elderly.


Most Americans own their home while most Micronesians rent. This difference is especially pronounced in Hawaii. Of those Micronesians who do own their homes, they have less valuable homes, but larger mortgages than the general population in Hawaii and California.

For the U.S. as a whole, the Micronesians have more valuable homes, but remember that proportionately more of them are in California and Hawaii, which are states with high home prices/values. Micronesians are also paying higher rent than the general population.

Micronesians are slightly less likely to be residing in the same house/apartment as they did a year earlier.


Approximately three quarters of the Micronesians are native to the U.S., and most of those who are foreign born are not U.S. citizens. Compared to other immigrant groups in the U.S., a greater portion of Micronesian immigrants are recent and arrived in the U.S. since 2000.

Except in Hawaii, most Micronesians speak English in their home.

DOWNLOAD: From American Community Survey: Micronesian alone or in any combination

(Excel files of selected profiles by David Huskins. The first tab includes technical details, appears just as it was downloaded from the Bureau's website, but includes U.S. totals, Hawaii and California all on 1 page. The second tab is a cut-down version, with less data, but generally the data people want, excluding margin of error columns and adding of brief comments.)

- Aenet Rowa, Yokwe Online, July 13, 2010


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