Florida’s Population Drops

21 08 2009

The recession and housing market bust are likely causes for the first decline in Florida’s population since 1946, University of Florida researchers said.

The university’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research estimated the state’s population slipped by 58,294 people, to 18,748,925 on April 1 from 18,807,219 in April 2008.

The last official, final census count – in 2000 – was 15,982,824.

“You can look at the one-year change if you want, but given the housing boom and bust, it’s possible that our bigger estimate included some speculative housing numbers,” said Scott Cody, a research demographer at the bureau. “You also may have had a lot of temporary residents still in 2008 – construction workers who were here and renting – and they were able to move.”

Cody said Florida’s natural attraction to retirees and as a vacation destination will probably continue to fuel growth after the economy improves.

Source: University of Florida’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research

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