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Friday, September 26, 2008
The total fertility rate, or the average number of children per woman, increased from 1.54 in 2005 to 1.59 in 2006. Although this was the highest total fertility rate since 1996, it remained well below the replacement level of 2.1 children per woman.
In 2006, the number of births in Canada was up 3.6%, the largest annual increase since 1989. Women are having children later in their reproductive years.
For four consecutive years, the number of births increased in Canada. In 2006, there were 354,617 births, up 12,441 from 2005.
Women in Canada keep postponing childbearing to older ages. Over the last 20 years, the average age of women giving birth rose from 27.0 to 29.3.
During this period, the fertility rate declined for Canadian women in their twenties, while it climbed steadily for women in their thirties.
In 2006, for the first time, the fertility rate of Canadian women aged 30 to 34 surpassed that of women aged 25 to 29. This rate has been higher than the rate for women aged 20 to 24 since 1989.
The fertility rate gap continues to narrow between women aged 20 to 24 and women aged 35 to 39.
From 2005 to 2006, births were up in every province and territory except for Nova Scotia and the Northwest Territories.
Quebec and Alberta were the largest contributors to the national increase in births, accounting for 70% of the total increase.
|Place of residence of mother||2005||2006||2005 to 2006|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||4,501||4,542||41||0.9|
|Prince Edward Island||1,340||1,413||73||5.4|
In 2006, the fertility rate of women aged 30 to 34 surpassed that of women aged 25 to 29 in Nova Scotia, Ontario, British Columbia and Yukon.
In the other provinces and territories, while there was an increase in the fertility of women in their thirties, women aged 25 to 29 remained the age group with the highest fertility rate.
Available on CANSIM: tables 102-4501 to 102-4516.
The 2006 issue of Births (84F0210XWE, free) is now available from the Publications module of our website.
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