Every year, the Social Security Administration (SSA) releases data about the most popular baby names. This info comes from Social Security card applications.
The Social Security Administration first started collecting baby names in 1997 — and retrospectively captured names as far back as 1880. Now, the agency tracks the names parents supply when applying for their child’s Social Security card.
This information is the source of popular baby name facts and statistics.
The Current Top Baby Names:
Curious to know the most recent findings? Here are the top 10 boys and girls names from this past year:
Fun Facts & Stats
- The SSA’s findings reveal both the enduring popularity of some names as well as the effects of pop culture and current events. Here are a few examples:
- Most Popular Boy Name Over Time: In the past 100 years, the male name Michael has held the top spot most often, 44 times.
- Most Popular Girl Name Over Time: Mary has been the No. 1 girls name 41 times during the same period.
- Biggest Jump in Popularity: Aranza (girl) and Bode (boy).
- Aranza rose 3,625 spots on the girls side to 607, from 4,232 in 2013. The telenovela “Por Siempre Mi Amor” aired on Univision from 2013 to 2015. The show featured a young lead character named Aranza.
- Bode jumped ahead 645 spots, from 1,428 in 2013 to 783 in 2014. This may be attributed to the Olympic alpine skier, Bode Miller, who won his sixth medal last year.
Fastest Overall Rising Baby Names:
- Axl (boys): The second-fastest riser is possibly a nod to both rock legend Axl Rose of Guns N’ Roses fame and Axl Jack Duhamel, son of Stacy Ann “Fergie” Ferguson (singer, The Black Eyed Peas) and Josh Duhamel (actor).
- Montserrat (girls): Montserrat, the lead character in a popular Latin soap opera, was No. 2 this year. Interesting: Another Monserrat (note the spelling difference), is also new to the list.
New Names in the Top 10
- James is a former No. 1 from the 1940s and 1950s.
- Charlotte is enjoying her first time in the top 10 girls names. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were right on trend with naming their baby girl Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte.