US births rose last year but still less than before pandemic

NEW YORK (AP) – U.S. births bumped up last year, but the number of babies born was still lower than before the coronavirus pandemic.

The 1% increase was a bit of a rebound from 2020.

The first year of the COVID-19 pandemic witnessed the largest one-year drop in births in nearly a half-century.

Government officials think last year’s uptick reflects pregnancies that were postponed during the early days of the pandemic.

Deliveries were way down in January last year, but improved as the year went on. But the government report released Tuesday shows there were still about 86,000 fewer births last year than in 2019.