Direct Marketing, Mail Order, and E-commerce News from the National Mail Order Association


Do you sell to Seniors? Here are some Quick Stats about Older Americans

Older Americans Month originated with a presidential proclamation in May
1963. It has been proclaimed by presidents every year since then. Last
year, President Bush stated, “Older Americans help others to understand the
past, and they teach timeless lessons of courage, endurance and love.

Through their legacy of patriotism, service, and responsibility, America’s
seniors also unite families and communities and serve as role models for
younger generations.”

36.3 million
The number of people 65 and over in the United States on July 1, 2004. This
age group accounts for 12 percent of the total population. Between 2003 and
2004, 351,000 people moved into this age group.

4.9 million
The number of people 85 and over in the United States on July 1, 2004.

86.7 million
Projected population of people 65 and over in the year 2050. People in this
age group would comprise 21 percent of the total population at that time.

Projected percentage increase in the 65-and-over population between 2000
and 2050. By comparison, the population as a whole would have increased by
only 49 percent over the same period.

Income and Wealth

Median net worth in 2000 of households with householders 65 and over. In
contrast, householders under the age of 35 had a median household net worth
of $7,240.

Median 2003 income of households with householders 65 and over,
statistically unchanged, in real terms, from the previous year.

Poverty rate for people 65 and over in 2003.

Serving Our Nation

9.7 million
Estimated number of people age 65 and over who are military veterans., 2004-2005 edition, Table No. 513.


4.6 million
Number of people age 65 and over who are still employed — this amounts to
13 percent of all people in this age group., 2004-2005
edition, Table No. 582.


Proportion of people ages 65 to 69 who graduated from high school.
Seventy-three percent of people ages 70 to 74 and 68 percent of those 75
and over are also high school graduates.

Percentage of the population ages 65 to 69 who have a bachelor’s degree or
higher education. Among people ages 70 to 74, 19 percent have achieved
this level of education; for those 75 and over, 15 percent are college

Number of people 65 and over enrolled in college in October 2002.

Marital Status and Living Arrangements

Percent of women age 65 and over who are widowed, greater than the 41
percent who are married and living with their spouses. Women age 65 and
older are three times more likely to be widowed than their male counterparts.
Among men in the same age group, 71 percent are married and
living with their spouses and only 14 percent are widowed.


Percentage of registered voters ages 65 to 74 who voted in the 2002
Congressional election. Seventy-two percent of people ages 65 to 74 voted
in the 2000 presidential election. This age group had the highest rate of
voter participation in both the 2000 and 2002 elections.


Proportion of householders age 65 and over who own their homes. This
compares with 68 percent for all householders., 2004-2005
edition, Table No. 951.

Coming to America

3.7 million
Number of U.S. residents 65 and over in 2004 who were foreign-born.

Population Distribution

The unprecedented number of people added each month to the world’s
population of people 65 and over. More than one-third of the world’s oldest
people (80 and above) lived in three countries: China (14.8 million), the
United States (10.7 million) and India (7.5 million).


Overall, the number of men age 65 and over on July 1, 2003, for every 100
women in this age group. For those in the 65 to 74 age group, the ratio is
83 men for every 100 women. For those 85 and over, it drops to 44 men per
100 women.

Estimated number of centenarians in the United States on August 1, 2004. <

States and Counties

Percentage of Florida’s population that was 65 and over on July 1, 2004.
Florida led all states in this category. West Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Dakota and Iowa
followed closely, at15 percent each.

Percentage increase in the number of people age 65 and over in Nevada
between July 1, 2003, and July 1, 2004. Alaska closely followed at 3.8

3.8 million
Number of people 65 and over living in California on July 1, 2004, the
highest total of any state. Florida, with 2.9 million, was the runner-up.

The highest percentage increase among counties in the 65 and over
population between 2000 and 2003. This distinction belongs to Douglas,
Colo. Following Douglas were Collin, Texas; Prince William, Va.; Fort Bend,
Texas; and Henry, Ga. (The findings pertain to counties with minimum
populations of 100,000.) The five largest numerical gainers over the period
were Los Angeles, Calif.; Clark (Las Vegas), Nev.; Orange (Anaheim),
Calif.; Maricopa (Phoenix), Ariz.; and Miami-Dade, Fla.

Sports Activities
12.4 million
Number of people 65 and over who engage in exercise walking, by far the
most popular sports activity for this age group, at least six times a year.
The next most popular forms of exercise for this age group are exercising
with equipment, net fishing and swimming., 2004-2005 edition,
Table No. 1241.

Do you need mailing lists of senior Americans? Contact John Schulte at the NMOA
with your needs. 612-788-1673


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