The teen birth rate in the United States is at a record low, dropping below 18 births per 1,000 girls and women ages 15 to 19 for the first time since the government began regularly collecting data on this group, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of newly released data from the National Center for Health Statistics.
In 2018, the birth rate among 15- to 19-year-old girls and women was less than half of what it had been in 2008 (41.5 births per 1,000). Asians and Pacific Islanders led the way over this time, followed by Hispanics, with teen birth rate declines of 74% and 65%, respectively. Rates for white and black teens fell by more than 50% over the past decade as well.
Today, millions of Americans use Twitter to break and comment on news, disseminate official pronouncements, organize campaigns and protests or just let their friends know what’s on their minds.
Here are 10 facts about Americans and Twitter, based on recent Pew Research Center surveys and other studies:
1Around one-in-five U.S. adults (22%) say they use Twitter, according to a 2019 Pew Research Center survey. The share of Americans who use the platform has remained consistent over the past several years and is similar to the share who use Snapchat (24%) and WhatsApp (20%). But a much larger share of U.S. adults use YouTube (73%) and Facebook (69%).
2Twitter users tend to be younger and to have more education and higher incomes than U.S. adults overall, according to a late 2018 survey. While Americans overall are about equally divided between those ages 18 to 49 and those 50 and older, U.S. adults on Twitter are nearly three times as likely to be younger than 50 as to be 50 and older (73% vs. 27%). Overall, 42% of U.S. adult Twitter users have at least a college degree, compared with 31% of all Americans. And 41% of adult Twitter users earn at least $75,000 a year, compared with 32% of all American adults. Read More →
Compared with other Americans, U.S. Jews have relatively high levels of religious knowledge – including about non-Jewish religions like Christianity, Islam and Sikhism. But most non-Jewish Americans are unable to answer some basic factual questions about Jewish practices, including about the Jewish Sabbath and New Year.
This disconnect is apparent in Pew Research Center’s new religious knowledge survey, which asked Americans 32 fact-based multiple-choice questions about religion, each of which had a single correct answer. The survey included questions that gauged knowledge about a range of different religious groups and varied widely in difficulty. (You can test your own knowledge by answering some of these questions in our new quiz.)
On average, U.S. Jews answer about 19 questions right (18.7, to be exact) – considerably more than a variety of other religious groups, including members of several Christian traditions as well as people who say their religion is “nothing in particular.” The only groups comparable to Jews in their levels of religious knowledge are atheists (17.9 questions right, on average), agnostics (17.0) and evangelical Protestants (15.5). While they are more religious than atheists and agnostics, of course, Jewish Americans are on the whole also much less likely than other U.S. adults to consider religion very important in their lives.
Layoffs continue to pummel U.S. newspapers. Roughly a quarter of papers with an average Sunday circulation of 50,000 or more experienced layoffs in 2018, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis.
The layoffs come on top of the roughly one-third of papers in the same circulation range that experienced layoffs in 2017. What’s more, the number of jobs typically cut by newspapers in 2018 tended to be higher than in the year before.
Mid-market newspapers were the most likely to suffer layoffs in 2018 – unlike in 2017, when the largest papers most frequently saw cutbacks. Meanwhile, digital-native news outlets also faced continued layoffs: In 2018, 14% of the highest-traffic digital-native news outlets went through layoffs, down slightly from one-in-five in 2017.
The following analysis examines layoffs at large newspapers and digital-native news outlets during the full 2017 and 2018 calendar years. An earlier analysis by the Center looked at layoffs at news organizations covering the period from January 2017 to April 2018.
Racial and ethnic diversity has increased among college faculty in the United States over the past two decades, but faculty are still much more likely than students to be white.
In fall 2017, about three-quarters of postsecondary faculty members in the U.S. were white (76%), compared with 55% of undergraduates, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). In contrast, around a quarter of postsecondary faculty were nonwhite (24%), versus 45% of students. (Postsecondary faculty includes all faculty across institutions that grant associate degrees and higher.)
Today’s kindergartners offer a glimpse of tomorrow’s demographics. The number of states where at least one-in-five public school kindergartners are Latino has more than doubled since 2000, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of Census Bureau data.
In 18 states and the District of Columbia, Latino children accounted for at least 20% of public school kindergarten students in 2017 (the most recent year available), up from eight states in 2000. However, only two states – Massachusetts and Nebraska – and the District have joined this list since 2010, while one state (Idaho) dropped off. This reflects the fact that Hispanic population growth has slowed over the past decade or so due to a declining number of births and a decrease in immigration, particularly from Mexico.
At nearly 60 million, Hispanics are the nation’s largest racial or ethnic minority group. They make up 18% of the U.S. population and have dispersed across the country widely since the 1980s. The states where at least one-in-five kindergartners are Hispanic include some with historically few Hispanics, such as Massachusetts, Nebraska and Washington.
Since 2014, the number of K-12 public school students from racial and ethnic minority groups – including Hispanic, black and Asian Americans – has been higher than the white student population nationwide, according to the U.S. Department of Education. In fall 2019, children from racial and ethnic minority groups are projected to make up 52.9% of public K-12 students. That’s a sharp increase from 1995, when minority groups accounted for just 35.2% of these students.
By a wide margin, Americans say they favor raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. But there is a deep partisan divide in views of this proposed policy – a version of which recently passed the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, though it is unlikely to be taken up by the GOP-controlled Senate.
Two-thirds of Americans (67%) support raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, including 41% who say they strongly favor such an increase, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted this spring.
Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are largely united in backing a $15 an hour federal minimum wage: 86% favor this, including nearly six-in-ten (59%) who say they strongly support it.
Republican opinion on this issue is more divided, but a majority of Republicans and Republican leaners – 57% – oppose raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, including nearly three-in-ten (29%) who say they are strongly against it.
There were more 27-year-olds in the United States than people of any other age in 2018. But for white Americans, the most common age was 58, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of Census Bureau data.
In the histogram above, which shows the total number of Americans of each age last year, non-Hispanic whites tend to skew toward the older end of the spectrum (more to the right), while racial and ethnic minority groups – who include everyone except single-race non-Hispanic whites – skew younger (more to the left).
The most common age was 11 for Hispanics, 27 for blacks and 29 for Asians as of last July, the latest estimates available. Americans of two or more races were by far the youngest racial or ethnic group in the Census Bureau data, with a most common age of just 3 years old. Among all racial and ethnic minorities, the most common age was 27.
Four years ago, technology companies were widely seen as having a positive impact on the United States. But the share of Americans who hold this view has tumbled 21 percentage points since then, from 71% to 50%.
Negative views of technology companies’ impact on the country have nearly doubled during this period, from 17% to 33%, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Nearly one-in-five (18%) now volunteer their impact has been neither positive nor negative or that it is mixed, or they offer no opinion.
The survey, which asks about the impact of seven major institutions and groups – including banks, universities, the news media and religious organizations – finds that no more than about half of U.S. adults say any of them are having a positive effect on the country.
There are substantial partisan differences in these views, but the gap between Democrats and Republicans is relatively modest when it comes to technology companies: Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are 10 percentage points more likely than Republicans and GOP leaners to say these firms have a positive effect on the way things are going in the country (54% vs. 44%). Since 2015, there have been similar declines in positive views among members of both parties.
From national laws regulating religious dress to local laws banning public worship by Muslims, religious restrictions have in recent years become more common in Europe. Indeed, while the Middle East-North Africa region had the highest levels of religious restrictions in the world, Europe saw some of the biggest increases over the last decade in certain types of restrictions.
These findings come from a recent Pew Research Center report that analyzes restrictions on religion (by both governments and private individuals or social groups) from 2007 to 2017. The report measures various types of government restrictions and social hostilities across eight different categories on a scale from zero to 10.
In one of these categories – government limits on religious activity – Europe’s score doubled over a 10-year period. This was one of the largest increases in any of the five global regions analyzed. (An explanation of the methodology is available here.)
About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research. Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts.