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1.1 Total marriages, Australia, 1993–2013CRUDE MARRIAGE RATE
The crude marriage rate represents the number of marriages registered during a calendar year per 1,000 estimated resident population at 30 June of the same year. For more information on the calculation of the crude marriage rate refer to Glossary and Explanatory Notes 36–40.
1.2 Crude marriage rates, Australia, 1993–2013
Australia's population has increased substantially over time. The number of marriages decreased in 2013, while the estimated resident population increased by 407,027 from 2012 to 2013. As a result, the crude marriage rate decreased from 5.4 to 5.1 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population.
MEDIAN AGE AT MARRIAGE
The median age at marriage for males in 2013 was 31.5 years, a slight increase from 31.4 in 2010, 2011 and 2012. The median age at marriage for females in 2013 was 29.5 years, an increase of 0.1 years since 2012.
1.3 Median age at marriage, Australia, 1993–2013
The median age at first marriage in 2013 was 29.9 years for males and 28.3 years for females. Median age at first marriage for males has changed little since 2009, increasing by 0.3 years over this time. The median age at first marriage for females has increased by 0.6 years over the same period.
1.4 Median age at first marriage, Australia, 1993–2013
AGE-SPECIFIC MARRIAGE RATES
Age-specific marriage rates provide a more detailed picture of the age at which people marry. These rates give an indication of the proportion of all males or females in a particular age group who marry in a given year. Further information on calculating age-specific marriage rates is provided in the Glossary and Explanatory Notes 38–42.
For both males and females in 2013, the highest age–specific marriage rates were for people between 25–29 years of age, with 42.1 marriages per 1,000 males and 48.3 marriages per 1,000 females.
The age-specific marriage rate for males between 25–29 years of age has declined from 53.2 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 1993 to 42.1 per 1,000 estimated resident population in 2013. Age-specific marriage rates also declined for males between 20–24 years of age over this period, from 36.3 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 1993 to 15.4 per 1,000 estimated resident population in 2013.
While the age-specific marriage rate for males between 20–29 years of age has decreased since 1993, it has increased for males between 30–39 years of age. The age-specific marriage rate for males between 30–34 years of age has increased from 28.9 per 1,000 estimated resident population in 1993 to 35.5 per 1,000 estimated resident population in 2013. Further, the age-specific marriage rate for males between 35–39 years of age have increased from 15.0 per 1,000 estimated resident population to 18.8 per 1,000 estimated resident population over the same period.
A similar change has occurred in age-specific marriage rates for females. Age-specific marriage rates for females between 20–24 years of age have decreased from 57.8 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 1993 to 24.7 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 2013. In contrast to males, the age-specific marriage rate for females between 25–29 years of age has increased from 46.4 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 1993 to 48.3 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 2013. For females between 30–34 years of age the age-specific marriage rates have increased from 21.5 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population in 1993 to 31.4 per 1,000 estimated resident population in 2013.
Table 1.5 Age specific marriage rates(a)(b), Australia, Selected years, 1993–2013
PREVIOUS MARITAL STATUS
In 2013, 96,693 brides (81.3% of all brides) and 94,795 grooms (79.7% of all grooms) had not married previously. The number of brides and grooms marrying for the first time has increased by 19.3% and 18.6% respectively over the past decade.
1.6 Previously never married, Australia, 1993–2013
Of the 118,962 marriages registered in 2013, 72.4% were between a bride and groom never previously married. A further 16.3% were first marriages for one partner, while 11.4% were remarriages for both partners.
In 2013, 17.4% of brides (20,652) and 19.0% of grooms (22,614), had been previously divorced. The proportion of brides and grooms who had previously been divorced decreased by 0.4 percentage points since 2012.
1.7 Previously divorced, Australia, 1993–2013
In 2013, 1,617 brides (1.4% of all brides) and 1,553 grooms (1.3% of all grooms) who registered for marriage, were widowed. The past 20 years has seen a decrease in brides and grooms who were previously widowed.
1.8 Previously widowed, Australia, 1993–2013
The proportion of marriages performed by civil celebrants has increased over the past 20 years. In 2013, 72.5% of all marriages were performed by civil celebrants. Civil marriages have outnumbered religious ceremonies since 1999. In 2013, of the 32,600 marriages performed by ministers of religion, the most common rites used were Catholic (32.3%) followed by Anglican (15.7%).
1.9 Type of celebrant, Australia, Selected years, 1993–2013
COUNTRY OF BIRTH
The proportion of marriages between two Australian born people has been gradually decreasing since 1993. Over this time, the proportion of marriages between two people born in Australia has decreased from 64.0% in 1993, to 55.1% of all marriages in 2013. Conversely, the proportion of marriages between two people born in the same overseas country has increased over the same period, from 8.0% in 1993 to 13.2% in 2013. Marriages of people born in different countries accounted for 31.6% of all marriages in 2013 compared with 28.0% in 1993.
1.10 Median age, males and females, by Country of birth, 2013
In 2013, the median age of grooms and brides born in Australia was 31.4 years and 29.3 years respectively. Among the countries analysed, the youngest median age was for brides born in Lebanon (25.6 years) and grooms born in India (27.6 years). Brides with the oldest median age were born in the UK, where the median age of brides is 34.9 years and grooms with the oldest median age were born in Greece (40.0 years).
COHABITATION PRIOR TO MARRIAGE
The majority of couples registering their marriage in 2013 cohabited prior marriage (76.6%). However, the number and proportion of couples cohabiting prior to marriage decreased from 2012 to 2013. In 2013, there were 91,123 couples cohabiting prior to marriage, a decrease from 95,673 (77.6%) in 2012.
1.11 Proportion of cohabitation prior to marriage, Australia, 2008–2013
Couples who cohabited prior to marriage tended to be slightly older than those who had not lived together prior to marriage. In 2013, the median age of males who lived with their wife before marriage was 31.8 years, compared with 31.5 years for all males who married in 2013. Similarly, the median age of females who lived with their husbands before marriage was 29.8 years, compared with 29.5 years for all females who married in 2013.
MONTH OF MARRIAGE
Of the 118,962 marriages registered in 2013, the most popular month of celebration for marriages was November with 14,592 (12.3%) marriages, followed by March with 14,584 (12.3%) marriages. The month of July was the least popular month for marriages with only 5,395 (4.5%) marriages taking place in that month. The number of weekends in a month influences the number of weddings in that month, so this should be taken into consideration when interpreting these data.
1.12 Months of marriage, Australia, 2013
STATE AND TERRITORY DATA
Marriage statistics in this publication are presented by the state or territory where the marriage was registered, rather than the state or territory of usual residence of the couple. For this reason, the ABS advises caution in the interpretation of data at a state or territory level as couples may choose to marry outside their state or territory of usual residence. Refer to Explanatory Notes 27–29 for more information.
1.13 NUMBER OF MARRIAGES(a), States and territories(b), Selected years, 1993–2013
South Australia was the only jurisdiction to report an increase in the number of registered marriages in 2013 (up by 656 or 8.5% from 2012). Decreases were reported across all other states and territories. The largest of these was Victoria which decreased by 2,317 or 7.7% from 2012, followed by Queensland, down by 1,261 or 4.8% from 2012.
New South Wales recorded the highest crude marriage rate in 2013 (5.5 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population), while the Northern Territory had the lowest crude marriage rate, with 3.7 marriages per 1,000 estimated resident population.
Marriages performed by ministers of religion as a proportion of all marriages in 2013 were highest in Australian Capital Territory (32.7%) and lowest in the Northern Territory (18.9%).
In 2013, the proportion of marriages where couples lived together prior to marriage was lowest in Victoria (67.6%) and highest in Tasmania (87.8%).
Table 1.14 Selected marriage indicators(a), States and territories of registration(b), 2013
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