Immigrants from Asia in the United States

Mary Hanna and Jeanne Batalova
Date of Publication: 
March, 2021
Source Organization: 
Migration Policy Institute

Asian immigration to the U.S. has grown significantly since the passage of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act, which eliminated discriminatory provisions of earlier immigration statutes. Today, immigrants from Asia account for nearly one-third of the 44.9 million immigrants in the United States. According to this article from the Migration Policy Institute, based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Department of Homeland Security’s Yearbook of Immigration Statistics, and the World Bank, India, China and the Philippines were the top origin countries of Asian immigrants since 2013. While Asian immigrants settle throughout the U.S., the primary destinations continue to be the states of California (30 percent), New York (nine percent) and Texas (eight percent). Immigrants from Asia have significantly higher education attainment levels than both all foreign- and U.S.-born adults. They are overrepresented in skilled occupations like management, business, science and arts. Their occupational profile produces significantly higher income for Asian immigrants compared to the overall foreign- and U.S.-born populations. Asian immigrants, on average, naturalize at a higher rate than other immigrant groups. However, their source of legal permanent residency is much less dependent on family ties and more on employment. (Jaisang Sun for the Immigrant Learning Center’s Public Education Institute) 


Hanna, M., & Batalova, J. (2021, March). Immigrants from Asia in the United States. Migration Policy Institute