Thirty-six percent of all new immigrants to the United States in 2010 were Asian, compared with 31 percent for Hispanics.
"At the end of the first decade of the 21st century, Asians have become the largest stream of new immigrants to the U.S. -- and, thus, the latest leading actors in this great American drama," said Paul Taylor, executive vice president of the Pew Research Center.
The report said Asian Americans are more satisfied than the general public with their lives, finances and the direction of the country, and they place more value than other Americans do on marriage, parenthood, hard work and career success.
While Asian Americans were once low-skilled, low-wage laborers in the United States, recent Asian arrivals are the most highly educated cohort of immigrants in U.S. history.
Asian American are the most likely of any major racial or ethnic group in America to live in mixed neighborhoods and to marry across racial lines.
Sixty-one percent of adults ages 25 to 64 who have come from Asia in recent years have at least a bachelor's degree, double the share among recent non-Asian arrivals, the survey said Tuesday.
The total population of Asian Americans, including foreign-born and U.S.-born adults and children, reached a record 18.2 million in 2011, or 5.8 percent of the total U.S. population, up from less than 1 percent in 1965. There are 52 million Hispanics, or 16.7 percent of the U.S. population.
The Pew Research Center surveyed 3,511 Asian Americans by telephone Jan. 3 to March 27. More than half said a successful marriage is one of the most important things in life, and 67 percent said being a good parent is one of the most important things in life. The survey said Asian Americans are more likely than all American adults to be married. Eighty percent of Asian American children are raised in a household with two married parents, the survey said.