Before COVID, more Mexicans came to the U.S. than left for Mexico for the first time in years

An estimated 870,000 Mexican migrants came to the U.S. between 2013 and 2018, while an estimated 710,000 left the U.S. for Mexico during that period. That translates to net migration of about 160,000 people from Mexico to the U.S., according to government data from both countries.

In the period from 2009 to 2014, by contrast, about a million people left the U.S. for Mexico while 870,000 Mexicans made the reverse trip, for net migration of about 130,000 people from the U.S. to Mexico. A similar trend from 2005 to 2010 resulted in effectively zero net migration between the two countries. (Due to the way the Mexican government sources report data, this analysis uses several overlapping time periods: 2005-2010, for example, and 2009-2014. In addition, migration from Mexico in this analysis includes only those who were born there, while migration to Mexico includes those born in Mexico, the U.S., and elsewhere.)