Jewish people – or Jews – are an ethnoreligious group that shares a common ethnicity and religion. Jews are descendants of the Israelites and the Hebrews and practice Judaism.
Around the world, there are as many as 17.5 million Jews. When taking into consideration those with partial Jewish ancestry, that number rises to an estimated 20.5 million.
In the United States, it is estimated that there are between 5.7 million and 10 million Jewish people. This group is known as Jewish Americans. Most Jewish Americans – as many as 95% -- are Ashkenazi Jews that were descended from the Jews of Eastern and Central Europe. The majority of these people were born in the United States.
According to the Jewish Virtual Library, Jews make up just over 2.2% of the population in the U.S. as of 2020. The highest percentage is found in New York, where over 1.77 million American Jews reside – or 9.1% of the state’s total population.
In Washington, D.C., there is also a high percentage of Jewish American residents. About 8.2% of the total population is Jewish American. This is over 57,000 people. New Jersey also has a high population of Jewish Americans. Almost 547,000 are part of this ethnoreligious group, making up 6.1% of the state’s total population. Massachusetts is home to over 293,000 Jews, which is 4.2% of the total population. Maryland is home to over 236,000 Jewish Americans – which is 3.9% of the population.
Pennsylvania saw the largest increase in its Jewish population from 2019 to 2020 when it grew from 298,240 to 434,165. This is a 45.8% increase.
In terms of the number of Jewish people living in each state, the following ten states come out on top: