Hungarian population loses another 40,000 in 2017

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According to preliminary data released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH), there were 1.6% fewer live births in 2017 than in 2016, while the number of deaths rose by 3.7% as a result of a significant death surplus early in the year related to a peaking flu epidemic. As a result, the natural decrease in 2017 was 40,100 persons, 6,110 more than a year earlier.

In December 2017 alone, there were 2.9% fewer live births and 4.3% fewer deaths than in the same month of 2016. In the last month of the year, the natural decrease - obtained by subtracting the number of live births from the number of deaths - was 3,895 persons, 291 fewer than in December 2016.

The number of marriages decreased by 3.9% in December, with the 2,284 marriages registered in the month being 92 fewer than in December 2016.

In the full year of January–December 2017, a total of 91,600 children were born, some 1,463 (1.6%) fewer than in 2016. However, since 2016 was a leap year, the examined period was one day shorter in 2017, noted the KSH. Taking this into account, the leap day-adjusted number of live births decreased to a lower extent, by 1.3% compared to the previous year.

In January 0.4% and in May 10% more children were born compared to the corresponding months of 2016, while in all other months of the year the number of births was lower year-on-year. The largest annual monthly drop in births of 6.2% occurred in October.

A total of 131,700 Hungarians died in 2017, which represented an increase of 3.7%, or numerically 4,647 more deaths than in 2016. The most significant increase in deaths occurred in January and February, when the leap day-adjusted number of deaths grew by 25% on average. Similarly to the trend two years ago, the peak of the flu epidemic is the likely explanation for the considerable mortality surplus at the beginning of 2017.

With the number of deaths increasing and the number of live births falling in 2017, the natural decrease over the year as a whole grew by 18%, totaling 40,100 persons as opposed to 33,990 in 2016.

The number of 50,600 marriages registered in 2017 was 1,205 (2.3%) fewer than in the previous year. Taking into consideration the leap-day effect, the decrease was somewhat lower, at 2.2%. The largest increase occurred in June, when 7.3% more people married than in the corresponding month of 2016. The most significant decline was in February, when the leap day-adjusted number of marriages fell by 12% year-on-year.

There were 9.4 live births and 13.5 deaths per thousand inhabitants in 2017 as a whole. The number of infant deaths was 3.6 per thousand live births in 2017, down 8.9% compared to 2016, and the lowest value measured so far.

The estimated population of Hungary, calculated on the basis of the 2011 census and taking into account international migration, was 9,771,000 at the end of 2017.

Data on births, deaths and marriages in January 2018 will be published by the KSH on March 23.

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