This risk factor shows the percent of all births, within each age group, that are to unmarried women.
Figure Teen 1. Percent of Births that are to Unmaried Women Within Age Groups
- The percent of children born outside of marriage is affected by several factors: the rate at which women marry, the rate at which unmarried women have children, and the rate at which married women have children.
- While the percent of births within each age group that are to unmarried women has been increasing for many years, it has recently leveled off. Although the percent of births within each group that are to unmarried women decreased in 1995 and then increased in 1996, these changes were small. This is true for both adult and teen women, as well as for black and white women. See Appendix D for data on the percent of births within each age group that are to unmarried women by race.
- As Table TEEN 1 shows, the percent of children born outside of marriage remains relatively high. Among teens, over three-quarters of children were born outside of marriage in 1996, compared to just over one-tenth in 1940. Among all women, nearly one-third of children were born outside of marriage, compared to 4 percent in 1940.
Table TEEN 1. Percent of Births that are to Unmarried Women Within Age Groups
|Year||Under 15||15-17 Yrs||18-19 Yrs||All Teens||All Women|
Notes: Births to unmarried women in the United States for 1940 - 1979 are estimated from data for registration areas in which marital status of the mother was reported; see sources below. Beginning in 1980, births to unmarried women in the United States are based on data from states reporting marital status directly and data from nonreporting states for which marital status was inferred from other information on the birth certificate; see sources below. Data for 1996 are preliminary.
Sources: U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Center for Health Statistics, "Births to Unmarried Mothers: United States, 1980 - 1992," Vital and Health Statistics, Series 21, No. 53, 1995 and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Center for Health Statistics, "Report of Final Natality Statistics, 1995," Monthly Vital Statistics Report, Vol. 45, No. 11, Supplement, 1997.