Indicators of Welfare Dependence: Annual Report to Congress, 2004. Non-marital Birth Risk Factor 3. Unmarried Teen Birth Rates Within Age Groups

04/27/2005

Figure BIRTH 3a. Births per 1,000 Unmarried Teens Ages 15 to 17, by Race: 1960-2002
Figure BIRTH 3a. Births per 1,000 Unmarried Teens Ages 15 to 17, by Race: 1960-2002
 
Figure BIRTH 3b. Births per 1,000 Unmarried Teens Ages 18 and 19, by Race: 1960-2002
Figure BIRTH 3b. Births per 1,000 Unmarried Teens Ages 18 and 19, by Race: 1960-2002
Source: National Center for Health Statistics, “Nonmarital Childbearing in the United States, 1940 - 1999,” National Vital Statistics Reports, Vol. 48 (16), 2000; “Births: Final Data for 2002,” National Vital Statistics Reports, Vol. 52 (10), December 2003.

  • The birth rate per 1,000 unmarried teens fell again in 2002 for both black and white teens and for both younger (15 to 17 years) and older age groups (18 and 19 years). The rate for black teens ages 18 and 19, for example, fell from 140 per thousand in 1994 to 104 per thousand in 2002. Declines were larger among black teens than among white teens.
  • Prior to 1994, birth rates among unmarried white teens in both age groups rose steadily for nearly three decades (from 4 to 24 percent among 15 to 17 year-olds and from 11 to 56 percent among 18 and 19 year-olds).
  • The birth rate among unmarried black teens in both age groups was lower in 2002 than it has been in over four decades. While birth rates among unmarried black teens remain high compared to rates for unmarried white teens, the gap been black and white teens narrowed considerably during the 1990s.

Table BIRTH 3. Births per 1,000 Unmarried Teen Women within Age Groups, by Race: 1950-2002

Year Ages 15 to17 Ages 18 and 19
All Races White Black All Races White Black
1950 9.9 3.4 N/A 18.3 8.5 N/A
1955 11.1 3.9 N/A 23.6 10.3 N/A
1960 11.1 4.4 N/A 24.3 11.4 N/A
1961 11.7 4.6 N/A 24.6 12.1 N/A
1962 10.7 4.1 N/A 23.8 11.7 N/A
1963 10.9 4.5 N/A 25.8 13.0 N/A
1964 11.6 4.9 N/A 26.5 13.6 N/A
1965 12.5 5.0 N/A 25.8 13.9 N/A
1966 13.1 5.4 N/A 25.6 14.1 N/A
1967 13.8 5.6 N/A 27.6 15.3 N/A
1968 14.7 6.2 N/A 29.6 16.6 N/A
1969 15.2 6.6 72.0 30.8 16.6 128.4
1970 17.1 7.5 77.9 32.9 17.6 136.4
1971 17.5 7.4 80.7 31.7 15.8 135.2
1972 18.5 8.0 82.8 30.9 15.1 128.2
1973 18.7 8.4 81.2 30.4 14.9 120.5
1974 18.8 8.8 78.6 31.2 15.3 122.2
1975 19.3 9.6 76.8 32.5 16.5 123.8
1976 19.0 9.7 73.5 32.1 16.9 117.9
1977 19.8 10.5 73.0 34.6 18.7 121.7
1978 19.1 10.3 68.8 35.1 19.3 119.6
1979 19.9 10.8 71.0 37.2 21.0 123.3
1980 20.6 12.0 68.8 39.0 24.1 118.2
1981 20.9 12.6 65.9 39.0 24.6 114.2
1982 21.5 13.1 66.3 39.6 25.3 112.7
1983 22.0 13.6 66.8 40.7 26.4 111.9
1984 21.9 13.7 66.5 42.5 27.9 113.6
1985 22.4 14.5 66.8 45.9 31.2 117.9
1986 22.8 14.9 67.0 48.0 33.5 121.1
1987 24.5 16.2 69.9 48.9 34.5 123.0
1988 26.4 17.6 73.5 51.5 36.8 130.5
1989 28.7 19.3 78.9 56.0 40.2 140.9
1990 29.6 20.4 78.8 60.7 44.9 143.7
1991 30.8 21.7 79.9 65.4 49.4 147.6
1992 30.2 21.5 77.3 66.7 51.1 146.2
1993 30.3 21.9 76.0 66.1 51.9 139.7
1994 31.7 23.9 74.0 69.1 55.7 139.2
1995 30.1 23.3 67.5 66.5 54.6 128.7
1996 28.5 22.3 62.8 64.9 53.4 126.8
1997 27.7 22.0 59.2 63.9 52.8 124.5
1998 26.5 21.5 55.2 63.7 53.0 121.0
1999 25.0 20.7 50.1 62.4 52.8 115.3
2000 23.9 19.7 48.3 62.2 53.1 115.0
2001 22.0 18.1 43.8 60.6 52.1 110.2
2002 20.8 17.5 39.9 58.6 51.0 104.1

Note: Rates are per 1,000 unmarried women in specified group. Trends in non-marital births may be affected by changes in the reporting of marital status on birth certificates and in procedures for inferring non-marital births when marital status is not reported. Beginning in 1980, data are tabulated by the race of the mother. Prior to 1980, data are tabulated by the race of the child. Rates for 1990-1999 have been revised on the basis of intercensal population estimates benchmarked to the 2000 decennial census and differ from earlier editions of this report.

Race categories include those of Hispanic ethnicity. Due to small sample size, American Indians/Alaska Natives, Asians and Native Hawaiians/Other Pacific Islanders are included in the total for all persons but are not shown separately.

Source: National Center for Health Statistics, “Nonmarital Childbearing in the United States, 1940 - 1999,” National Vital Statistics Reports, Vol. 48 (16), 2000; “Births: Final Data for 2002,” National Vital Statistics Reports, Vol. 52 (10), December 2003.

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