Thursday, May 03, 2012

New Hampshire: Aging Demographics a Cause for Concern

The Carsey Institute of the University of New Hampshire has issued a demographic report that while New Hampshire does not have a large population of seniors, a rapid increase in the older population is inevitable and coming soon. Among other things, in "New Hampshire Demographic Trends in the Twenty-First Century," the author, Kenneth M. Johnson, the Institute's senior demographer, argues that while New Hampshire’s large population of working-aged adults has provided much of the human capital the state needs to fuel continued economic growth, the lack of significant growth in these age groups is a cause for some concern.
New Hampshire’s age structure dictates that the number of older adults will increase rapidly in the next two decades. There are currently 97,000 65- to 74-year-olds in New Hampshire. In contrast, there are 179,000 55- to 64-year-olds and 226,000 45- to 54-year-olds.
New Hampshire's economy had been fueled by in-migration, but "the loss of migrants has an immediate financial impact on the state and implications for its human, intellectual, and social capital." During the recession, in fact, out-migration has resulted in New Hampshire experiencing a 10.6% net loss of the 20- to 29-year-olds coveted by employers. Thus, Johnson argues, "[a\ggressive programs exemplified by the 'Stay, Work, Play Initiative' should be considered to retain young adults, encourage those who left to return, and attract more young adults to the state."

Source: The Carsey Institute Publication Abstract (May 1, 2012)

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