Israelis are getting married less and having more children, according to the "2022 State of the Nation" report by the Taub Center for Social Policy Studies in Israel, which was released on Thursday morning.
The report presents an in-depth analysis of Israel's society and economy over the past year. It is part of a larger series of such studies by the Taub Center.
A review of macroeconomic trends conducted by Prof. Binyamin Bentel and Dr. Laviv Shami touches on the significant differences between Europe, the US and Israel in terms of food and energy prices. In Europe and the US, the increase in food prices was more rapid than the increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI), while in Israel the two increased at nearly the same rate.
In terms of energy prices, the differences between Israel and other countries are even starker.
In the US and Europe, energy prices have risen about 40%, while Israel only saw about 20% rise. This figure does not undermine the fact that prices in Israel are still among the highest in the West, and researchers have proven that high cost of living mainly hurts the poor.
Marriage and salary
A study by Michael Davoy, Prof. Gil Epstein and Prof. Avi Weiss examined the relationship between marriage and salary, finding that a married man is more likely to be employed than an unmarried man. Among women, however, married women are currently 2% less likely to be employed than single women. Divorced, separated and widowed women are 2% more likely to be employed than single women.
The average hourly wage of married men is about 30% higher than that of single men after controlling for other variables, and married women earn about 20% more than single women, but only half of this advantage is expected to continue for those who are no longer married.
Israel is growing at a rapid rate
In a study conducted by Prof. Alex Weiner and Kirill Scherberman on the demographic trends in Israel, it was found that the population of Israel is growing at a rapid rate. In 2022, the population growth rate returned and increased to about 2.1%. As a result, the population of Israel is expected to reach 9.65 million by the end of the year, compared to 9.45 at the beginning of the year. In 2021, the total fertility rate in Israel increased by 0.1 children and reached 3.0 children per woman. This increase was mainly due to an increase of 0.13 children among Jewish women. Among Muslim women who are citizens of Israel, the total fertility rate increased by only 0.02 children.
The report also shows that more than 51% of the territory of the European countries that are members of the OECD is covered by natural sources such as trees, grasslands and swamps, compared to only 3.2% of Israel's territory. In contrast, the share of artificial areas in Israel (buildings, roads, etc.) has grown in recent decades much faster than in the OECD countries.
"For the most part, these decreases are due to an increase in the number of single men and women who live in cohabitation without marriage."Prof. Alex Weiner
Prof. Alex Weiner finds that among Jewish women in the years before COVID, the decrease in the percentage of women expected to marry at least once by the age of 55 was sharp - from a rate of more than 80% in 2014-2012 to 70% in 2019. Among Muslim and Druze women there was a drop to just under 75%.
The overall marriage rate of Jewish, Christian and Druze men fell below 70% between 2015 and 2019.
"For the most part, these decreases are due to an increase in the number of single men and women who live in cohabitation without marriage," explains Weiner.
Their proportion of all marital partnerships in Israel is about 5% and is still much lower than in other countries: 12% in the USA, 13% in Germany, 24% in Denmark and 27% in Norway.