Published: 21 April 2015

Fall in the number of marriages contracted tapered off

According to Statistics Finland’s data on population changes, 24,462 marriages were entered into in Finland in 2014, which was 657 fewer than in the year before. In 2013, the number went down much more, by nearly 3,800 from the year before. The decrease in the marriage rate concerned almost without exception all age groups. The number of marriages contracted was in 1999 last time lower than in 2014.

Number of marriages and divorces 1965–2014

Number of marriages and divorces 1965–2014

A majority of the decrease in marriages came from a decline in first marriages as in the previous year. Despite this, the share of first marriages in all marriages remained almost unchanged at around three-quarters. The relative share has remained at the same level throughout the early 2000s. Around one-fifth of all marriages contracted were second marriages.

In 2014, the rise in the average age of women and men entering into their first marriage continued after one intervening year, as the average age of both spouses rose by 0.1 years from the year before. The average age of women entering into their first marriage was 30.7 years and 32.9 years for men.

The number of divorces has long remained at the same level

In 2014, the number of divorces decreased slightly while it had increased in the previous year. Altogether 13,682 marriages ended in divorce, which is 84 fewer than one year previously. The divorce rate has remained at the same level for over 20 years. Changes by age in the divorce rate were minor compared with the previous year.

The average age of women in their first marriage was 39.9 when their marriage ended in divorce. The corresponding average age of men was 42.3 in 2014. In the last few years, there have been no great changes in the average ages of women and men.

Clearly under one-half of first marriages end in divorce.

The probability that the first marriage ends in divorce has remained unchanged in recent years. According to the divorce rate in 2014, first marriages end in divorce with a probability of 39 per cent.

Sixty-eight per cent of the marriages that ended in divorce in 2014 were first marriages for both spouses. The share has remained unchanged compared with the previous year. In 1990, the corresponding percentage was still 80. Eleven per cent of the marriages ending in divorce were second marriages for both spouses in 2014.

A low number of same-sex partnerships are registered per year. In 2014, the registrations numbered 333. Of these, 117 were male couples and 216 female couples. A total of 109 registered same-sex partnerships ended in divorce. Of them, 30 were of male couples and 79 of female couples. In 2013, altogether 373 same-sex partnerships were registered and 101 same-sex partnerships ended in divorce.

Changes in marital status, mean age of men and women at first marriage in 2005–2014

  Year
2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Contracted marriages    29 283    28 236    29 497    31 014    29 836 29 952 28 408 28 878 25 119 24 462
Divorces 13 383 13 255 13 224 13 471 13 527 13 619 13 469 13 040 13 766 13 682
Woman's mean age at first marriage 29,6 29,7 29,9 30,2 30,2 30,3 30,6 30,8 30,6 30,7
Man's mean age at first marriage 31,8 32,1 32,3 32,5 32,5 32,6 32,9 33,1 32,8 32,9
Woman's mean age at first divorce 40,2 40,4 40,5 40,3 40,0 39,9 40,4 40,0 40,0 39,9
Man's mean age at first divorce 42,5 42,7 42,8 42,5 42,2 42,3 42,7 42,3 42,3 42,3
Registered partnerships      200 191 213 249 246 322 333 329 373 333
Divorces from registered partnerships 31 30 67 45 53 64 85 103 101 109

Source: Population and Justice Statistics. Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Timo Nikander 029 551 3250, vaesto.tilasto@stat.fi

Director in charge: Riitta Harala

Publication in pdf-format (277.7 kB)

Tables

Tables in databases

Appendix tables

Figures
Quality descriptions

Updated 21.4.2015

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Changes in marital status [e-publication].
ISSN=1797-643X. 2014. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 20.10.2017].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/ssaaty/2014/ssaaty_2014_2015-04-21_tie_001_en.html

Share