Demographics
Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2012-16


Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2012-16

What does this measure?

The growth or decline in the number of residents of a geographic area, broken down by racial and ethnic groups.

Why is this important?

Population measures provide insight on how communities are changing in size and composition. The racial and ethnic makeup of a community can offer insight into its levels of diversity, which also may reflect particular challenges and opportunities.

How is our county performing?

From 2000 to 2012-16, Berks County's Hispanic population more than doubled - a 116% increase. Its Asian population increased 58% and its African American population rose 53%. The county's white population increased slightly (5%). Despite these shifts, white people still outnumbered Hispanic people, the next largest subgroup, by a margin of 4.4 to 1.

The changes in Berks were similar to changes at the state and national levels and in the neighboring counties, though Berks County's growth in African Americans and Hispanics was significantly higher than most other places. Lancaster and Lehigh counties also had large increases.

Within Berks County, all regions saw increases in Hispanic and African American populations. The Central region in particular saw a 500% rise in its Hispanic population and a 570% rise in its African American population. The City of Reading had increases among African Americans (8%) and Hispanics (84%), and a 49% decrease in the Asian population. Its white population decreased minimally (down by 1%).

Notes about the data

For additional detail as to how the Berks County regions are defined and which boroughs and townships are included in each, see the About Us page.

There may be additional research available on this topic. Click on Reports and Resources to learn more.

Rate is percentage change from 2000. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group. Data for this indicator are released annually in July.

Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2012-16
AsianBlack or African/AmericanHispanicWhite
United States62%16%56%10%
Pennsylvania86%16%115%-1%
Berks County58%53%116%5%
Berks County Regions
Central-19%**22%98%-1%
Northeast36%****550%**222%**5%
South122%139%286%12%
Southeast128%****128%****268%**12%
West256%****48%**159%3%
Reading city-49%**8%84%-1%
Berks County Peers
Chester County171%13%126%14%
Lancaster County67%73%97%10%
Lebanon County50%138%166%6%
Lehigh County71%131%146%4%
Montgomery County98%31%150%1%
Schuylkill County36%25%238%-6%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Rate is percentage change from 2000. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group. Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.




Total Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2012-16
AsianBlack or African/AmericanHispanicWhite
United States16,614,62540,241,81855,199,107233,657,078
Pennsylvania401,9791,410,563843,16410,402,743
Berks County5,73320,00977,946346,269
Berks County Regions
Central1,251**11,54361,83774,033
Northeast374****1,508**2,708**61,429
South2,6564,2788,70998,762
Southeast620****1,302****1,197**51,624
West832****1,378**3,49560,413
Reading city707**9,98055,50848,153
Berks County Peers
Chester County23,71829,90736,161441,027
Lancaster County10,98622,01552,083472,127
Lebanon County1,6582,82816,007120,440
Lehigh County11,68024,17478,318282,360
Montgomery County58,14072,31238,600655,493
Schuylkill County7524,0385,219136,781

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group. Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.




Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2000
AsianBlack or African/AmericanHispanicWhite
United StatesN/AN/AN/AN/A
PennsylvaniaN/AN/AN/AN/A
Berks CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A
Berks County Regions
CentralN/AN/AN/AN/A
NortheastN/AN/AN/AN/A
SouthN/AN/AN/AN/A
SoutheastN/AN/AN/AN/A
WestN/AN/AN/AN/A
Reading cityN/AN/AN/AN/A
Berks County Peers
Chester CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A
Lancaster CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A
Lebanon CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A
Lehigh CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A
Montgomery CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A
Schuylkill CountyN/AN/AN/AN/A

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Rate is percentage change from 2000. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group. Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.




Total Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2000
AsianBlack or African/AmericanHispanicWhite
United States10,242,99834,658,19035,305,818211,460,626
Pennsylvania216,6311,211,669392,12110,486,177
Berks County3,62113,05736,096329,662
Berks County Regions
Central1,5359,49331,26274,781
Northeast27623284058,408
South1,1991,7922,25588,118
Southeast27257132546,013
West2349311,35058,372
Reading city1,3989,26230,18148,397
Berks County Peers
Chester County8,75526,42116,016386,885
Lancaster County6,56312,72226,451431,106
Lebanon County1,1081,1876,016113,647
Lehigh County6,84110,44931,811271,599
Montgomery County29,43155,19015,463649,031
Schuylkill County5533,2271,545145,305

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group. Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.




INDICATORS TREND | BERKS COUNTY
Early Prenatal Care Increasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Maintaining
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Change in Population by Age and Gender Not Applicable
Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Population by Age and Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Change in Labor Force Increasing
Employment to Population Ratio Decreasing
Change in Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Sector Share of Total Jobs Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
People Entering/Leaving Region for Work Not Applicable
Public Assistance Increasing
Local Government Spending Increasing
County Government Spending Decreasing
School District Spending Increasing
Quality Early Childhood Centers Increasing
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Price Lunch Increasing
English Language Learners Increasing
Students Receiving Special Education Services Increasing
Per Student Spending Increasing
Student Performance on Grade 3 English Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 3 Math Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 English Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math Not Applicable
Student Performance on High School Reading Increasing
Student Performance on High School Math Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Increasing
Plans of High School Graduates Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Brain Drain/Gain Increasing
Median Household Income Decreasing
Median Household Income by Household Type Not Applicable
Living Wage by Household Type Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
Working Poor Maintaining
People Receiving Federal Food Assistance Increasing
Health Status Decreasing
Managed Medicaid Enrollment Increasing
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Physically Inactive Adults Maintaining
Adults Who Are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Children Who Are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Youth Who Are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Vacant Housing Units Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Housing Affordability for Homeowners Decreasing
Housing Affordability for Homeowners by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Housing Affordability for Renters Increasing
Housing Affordability for Renters by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Age of Housing Stock Not Applicable
Single-Family Home Sales Maintaining
Median Single-Family Home Sale Price Increasing
Tourism Spending Decreasing
Voter Registration Rate Increasing
Voter Participation Rate Increasing
Average Charitable Giving Increasing
Charitable Contributions as a Percentage of Income Increasing
Households With Internet Access Increasing
Dams Not Applicable
Violent Crimes Decreasing
Property Crimes Decreasing
Incarceration Rates Decreasing
Drug Abuse Offenses Increasing
Drug Abuse Arrests Increasing
Protection from Domestic Abuse Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Households Without Vehicles Decreasing
Crashes Involving Alcohol Decreasing