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December 2018 Population Estimates

Salt Lake City―The Utah Population Committee (UPC) today released 2018 population estimates for Utah and each of its 29 counties. The committee estimates Utah’s total population at 3,166,647, an increase of approximately 402,000 people since April 1, 2010.

From 2017 to 2018, the population grew by 52,664 people. This is an annual growth rate of 1.69 percent, a deceleration from the previous year’s 1.93 percent.

The new 2018 estimates indicate that Utah’s rapid growth over the past few years is moderating. Utah’s total components of population change, the sum of natural increase and net migration, remains positive but declined by 6,325 compared to last year. While Utah’s population growth slowed, it remains positive.

“Utah’s strong demographic growth is related to continued economic growth as well as positive natural increase,” said Pamela Perlich, director of demographic research at the Gardner Policy Institute. “Utah County leads the way in the Wasatch metropolitan area, while growth in southwestern Utah continues to surge.”

Other highlights from the new estimates include:

  • Net migration remains healthy: After increasing each year since 2012, Utah’s net migration decreased in 2018 to 23,248, below last year’s estimate by 3,843 or 14.2 percent. This is still significant in-migration to the state.
  • Declining natural increase: Declining births is a recent national and Utah trend beginning in 2008. Utah’s 47,310 births are at the lowest level since 2000. Utah maintains one of the highest fertility rates in the nation. However, Utah’s total fertility rate (2.12 in 2017) is currently second to South Dakota (2.23 in 2017). Deaths are also increasing due to Utah’s aging population.
  • Strong growth in Utah County: Utah County experienced the highest numeric annual increase this year with 15,847 new residents or 2.57 percent growth. This increase is 2,041 higher than Salt Lake County’s 13,806 population increase (or 1.22 percent growth).
  • Highest percent growth concentrated in Southwest Utah: Iron County experienced the highest percent annual increase this year with 3.58 percent growth or 1,873 new residents. Washington County showed a similar but slightly less percent growth with a 3.29 percent increase or 5,449 new residents.

The new state and county population estimates are now available online.

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