America’s been having fewer babies since around the time of the recession, probably because suddenly everyone’s money was gone and women were afraid of taking vacations, much less maternity leave. But for the first time since 2007, the birth rate has actually increased. Maybe you’re not imagining the uptick in pregnant friends, after all.
The Wall Street Journal reports on new numbers from the CDC. From 2013 to 2014, the rate crept up from 62.5 births per thousand women of childbearing age to 62.9. That adds up quickly, of course—the AP puts the total at roughly 53,000 additional babies. (BABIES. BABIES BABIES BABIES.)
Meanwhile, as the Verge notes, the teen birth rate has actually dropped nine percent. It’s older women who’re having the babies:
But if teens are having fewer children, how did the birth rate increase? Women in their 30s and 40s are having more kids — and it’s showing up in the CDC’s statistics. Births among women in their thirties increased by 3 percent; for women in their 40s, by 2 percent. The change was apparent for women of all races, the researchers report — except among American Indian and Alaska Native women, who experienced a decrease. The proportion of births among older married women increased, while the proportion of unmarried younger women who gave birth went down.
Wonder how many of those ladies have been waiting around several years for the economy to look a little less like a dumpster fire? But break out the trend-o-caster just yet: “I’ve learned not to prognosticate,” said the CDC’s Brady Hamilton. Come on, Brady, I’m trying to be first past the post with a Millennials Are Having Babies and Boy Howdy That Means Things thinkpiece, here.
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