The latest population estimates from the California Department of Finance conclude that the county grew by 43,758 between mid-2015 and mid-2016. That's only a 0.43 percent increase. But the megalopolis we call Southern California, including Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Orange and San Bernardino counties, accounted for nearly half the state's growth during that time — and ranked one through five in total population gains, respectively — the department found.
While those counties posted the highest numerical gains, rural counties such as Yolo (nearly 2 percent), San Joaquin (1.56 percent) and Placer (1.44 percent) posted the highest increases as percentages of their mid-2015 populations, according to the state estimates.
The state overall grew by 295,000 people this year and has nearly reached the 40 million mark. Interestingly, California's birthrate at midyear — 12.42 births per 1,000 residents — was “the lowest level in California’s history,” according to a Department of Finance statement. Yet those births, all 225,000 of them, were responsible for the lion's share of the state's population increase this year. “Growth in these [Southern California] counties was due primarily to natural increase, although most of the counties had positive net migration as well,” according to the Finance statement.
About 70,000 people moved to the Golden State this year, Finance found. Since 2010 California has added 2.1 million people to its population.
L.A. County's population is now 10,229,245. That means that Angelenos account for more than one in four Californians, according to the department.