The United States now has more Spanish speakers than Spain — and the second most in the world, according to a new study.
A report published by the renowned Instituto Cervantes research center says there are now an estimated 52.6 million people in the US who can speak the worldwide romance language
, which is second only to Mexico’s 121 million.
In comparison, Colombia is made up of 48 million Spanish speakers and Spain only has 46 million.
The report also found that there are now around 559 million Spanish speakers worldwide. About 470 million of those people are native speakers.
Data obtained from the US Census Office suggests that the US will have an estimated 138 million Spanish speakers by 2050 — which would make it the biggest Spanish-speaking nation on Earth.
There are currently 41 million native Spanish speakers living in the US today — and another 11.6 million people who are bilingual, many of whom are the children of Spanish-speaking immigrants, the report says.
An estimated 18.2 percent of New Yorkers can speak Spanish, according to the US Hispanic Data Gallery
New Mexico is home to the highest population of Spanish-speakers in the country, with 47 percent. California and Texas are next in line with 38 percent, followed by Arizona (30 percent), Nevada (27.3 percent) and Florida (23.2 percent).
The lowest concentrations of Spanish-speaking Americans are located in West Virginia (1.3 percent), Maine (1.4 percent) and Vermont (1.6 percent).
The Instituto Cervantes is a worldwide organization that is devoted to the study and teaching of Spanish language and culture.