US Birth Rate Drops To Lowest Level In Nearly 35 Years

The number of babies born in the United States hit a record low in 2023 according to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Last year saw fewer than 3.6 million births, a decline of approximately 76,000 compared to 2022 and the lowest figure recorded in almost 35 years.

This significant drop in births follows a brief uptick during the COVID-19 pandemic which had interrupted a decade-long trend of declining fertility rates in the U.S. Between 2019 and 2020 the birth rate had fallen by a substantial 4% before experiencing a slight increase in the following two years.

Nicholas Mark, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin who studies the relationship between social policy and fertility commented on the latest CDC report stating “there’s some evidence that not just postponement is going on.” The data revealed that while the birth rate decreased among women under 40 last year it did not rise for older women.

The reduction in births was consistent across most racial and ethnic groups in the United States. Some experts had speculated that the Supreme Court’s decision in 2022 to overturn Roe v. Wade which allowed states to restrict or ban abortions might lead to an increase in births. However, despite the implementation of various abortion regulations the birth rate continued to fall.