California's Population Edges Up to 38.7 Million

(Lisa Pickoff-White/KQED)

The slow growth of California continued in 2014, with the state's population as of New Year's Day at 38,715,000, per a state government report issued Friday.

That's 358,000 more Californians than the year before, an increase of just 0.9 percent. That's about half the rate of growth that took place in the previous decade, say state researchers, and is significantly slower than California's meteoric rise in the late 20th century.

So where do Californians live? The top five cities have remained pretty consistent over recent years:

  • Los Angeles: 3,957,022
  • San Diego: 1,368,061
  • San Jose: 1,016,479
  • San Francisco: 845, 602
  • Fresno: 520,159

Three of California's five fastest-growing counties in 2014 were in the Bay Area: San Francisco, Alameda, and Contra Costa counties all grew by 1.3 percent. And the state's third-fastest-growing city was Dublin, which saw its population rise by 4.5 percent.


Interestingly, the fastest-growing city in California in 2014 saw residents who, well, might not have wanted to be there: Taft, located in Kern County, grew by 6.3 percent — a population increase completely accounted for, say state officials, by the reopening of a community correctional facility.

The state Department of Finance has posted all of the new demographic data online.