Fertility Rate in the United States

US fertility rates hit the lowest level ever recorded during the first quarter of 2017, reflecting both biological and social changes among the population, including delaying child-bearing and electively choosing not to have children. The current downward trend started in 2007-2008 shortly before the global economic crisis, which could have affected financial resources and planning decisions, and has only recently slowed to a decrease of about 1 percent annually as of 2015.

During the first quarter of 2017, the general fertility rate in the US fell to 57.7 birth per 1,000 women aged 15-44 years, a decrease of 5.9 percent from the previous quarter and 3.8 percent compared to the same period of 2016. US women aged 40-44 years were an outlier, with the birth rate among these women continuing to increase slightly during the first quarter by almost 1 percent. In 2015, the United States ranked 138th of 202 economies globally by total fertility rate, according to the World Bank, a slightly lower rate than Scandinavian countries Sweden and Denmark. African countries have the highest fertility rates globally, making up 14 of the top 15 countries by births per 1,000 women. Afghanistan was ranked 14th in 2015.

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