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Population Gains and Losses

A first quarter report from the U.S. Census Bureau indicates that key metropolitan areas are growing, albeit at a slower pace than a year ago. The Dallas-Fort Worth metro area recorded the biggest population gain for the year ending July 1, 2007 - 162,250 individuals - followed by Atlanta, Phoenix, and Houston, each of which also grew by more than 100,000 people.

Eight of the 10 fastest-growing metro regions in terms of percentage change in population are in the South - led by Palm Coast, Florida, which experienced a 7.2 percent gain. St. George, Utah, ranked second with a 5.1 percent increase. Additionally, Raleigh, Austin, and Charlotte - were big gainers in terms of numerical count as well as percentage change. Federal analysts attribute this to the fact that government and technology continue to generate jobs in these locales.

Among the biggest population losers was the New York metro region. It lost 219,000 inhabitants from 2006 to 2007, after having lost 270,000 from 2005 to 2006. However, the Chicago metro area only lost 20,000 last year, half as many as the year previous.

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