MN Leading Upper Midwest Population Growth

The largest economic growth hurdle for the next ten years will be availability of workforce. Historically, Minnesota has had one of the highest labor force participation rates in the country.

To capitalize on this, the size of the population needs to continue to grow.

Population growth is impacted by Vital Events (births and deaths) and Net Migration (international and domestic).

In comparing Minnesota to other Upper Midwest states (Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin), the North Star State is leading the pack according to the most recent census figures. Since 2010, Minnesota’s population has grown by over 307,000. The next closest state is Wisconsin at 126,000. More recently, over the last recorded year (2017 to 2018), Minnesota has grown by 43,000. A majority of the growth (60%) has been Natural Increase from births.

The 40% population growth from migration paints a strong picture of economic vitality. Minnesota grew by 17,487 people through migration (10,718 International, 6,769 Domestic). Only one other state in the Upper Midwest could claim positive domestic population growth (South Dakota).


Net Migration (2017-2018)
State Total International Domestic
Minnesota 17,487 10,718 6,769
South Dakota 4,297 3,659 638
Wisconsin 7,040 8,051 -1,011
North Dakota 218 2,597 -2,379
Iowa 2,942 5,828 -2,886
Michigan 4,649 21,415 -16,766
Illinois -83,419 30,735 -114,154

To review the complete table click below:

Link to U.S. Census

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