(ABCNEWS.GO) — Americans had fewer babies in 2011 than in any year before, according to an annual summary of vital statistics.

In 2011, 3,953,593 babies were born in the U.S. — 1 percent fewer than in 2010 and 4 percent fewer than in 2009, according to Brady Hamilton, PhD, of the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues at the agency and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

That number, combined with population data, yielded a crude birth rate of 12.7 per 1,000 people, the lowest rate ever reported for the nation, they reported online and in the March 2013 issue of Pediatrics.

  • Text smaller
  • Text bigger
Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.