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Births, Deaths and Marriages in Quarter 4 and Yearly Summary 2009

The CSO today released the Vital Statistics, Fourth Quarter and Yearly Summary 2009 report.

Some of the key points highlighted in the report are as follows:


  • There were 74,278 births registered in 2009, a decrease of just over 1% in the number of births registered in 2008. The number of births registered remains high following last years recording of the highest number of births since 1896. The 2009 figure is the second highest number recorded in a year since 1897.
  • In 2009 the fertility rate for Ireland was 2.07, a decrease of 1.4% from the rate of 2.1 recorded in 2008. The fertility rate represents the projected number of children a woman would have if she experienced current age specific fertility rates while progressing from age 15-49 years. A value of 2.1 is generally considered to be the level at which the population would replace itself in the long run, ignoring migration.
  • Similar to 2008, over two in five (42%) births in 2009 were to first time mothers and just over 33% of births in 2009 were outside marriage. Almost 56% of all births outside marriage were to cohabiting parents.


  • There were 28,898 deaths registered in 2009, an increase of 706 on the 2008 figure. This represents a slight increase in the death rate from 6.4 per 1,000 of the population in 2008 to 6.5 per 1,000 of the population in 2009.
  • Over 3 in every 4 deaths were from either diseases of the circulatory system (34%), cancer (29%), or diseases of the respiratory system (13%). There were 8,396 deaths due to cancer, an increase of 2.4% on the same figure last year. There was a decrease in the number of deaths due to circulatory disease in the year, 1.9%. Diseases of the respiratory system, external causes and all other causes of death increased by 7.5%, 13.9% and 4.3% respectively.
  • There were 527 suicides registered in 2009 or 11.8 per 100,000 of the population. This compares with 424 suicides registered in 2008, an increase of 24%. Males represented 80% of suicides, while females represented 20%. The largest increases occurred in the 25-44 year age-groups.

Natural Increase

  • The natural increase (births minus deaths) in 2009 was 45,380, a decrease of 3.2% on the 2008 figure.


Marriages and Divorces

  • There were 21,541 marriages registered in 2009, 702 less than in 2008. The number of divorces granted by the Circuit Court and the High Court was 3,341.


Vital Statistics Fourth Quarter and Yearly Summary 2009 is priced at €10.00 and is available free of charge on our website (PDF 271KB)

Hard copies available from the:

Central Statistics Office, Information Section, Skehard Road, Cork,

Government Publications Sales Office, Sun Alliance House, Molesworth Street, Dublin 2,

or through any bookseller.

For more information contact Sandra Tobin (LoCall 1890 313 414 ext 5307).

Internet address:


Central Statistics Office                                                                     29 June 2010

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