New York City Health Department announced that Ethan and Olivia were the most popular baby names in New York City in 2015. Olivia rose from the number three spot while Sophia – which had been the number one girl’s name since 2012 – fell to number two. Ethan held on to the number one spot for boys. The Health Department’s birth certificate records show 773 Ethans and 595 Olivias were born in New York City in 2015. There were also two ties on this year’s list, one for boys and another for girls, rare in the citywide rankings.
Nine of the top 10 girls’ names from 2014 held their place on the 2015 list. Madison joined the top 10 list at number 9, while Sofia moved out of the list, falling to number 11. In 2015, Emma and Mia tied for number three. Emma moved from number five in 2014 to number three. Isabella, which was number two in 2014, fell to number four. For boys, nine out of the 10 top names from 2014 remained in the top 10 list for 2015. Alexander fell out of the top 10 list for 2015 and was replaced by Dylan (number 8, tied with Daniel) and Aiden (number 9). Matthew, which was number 10 in 2014, moved to number six. Jayden, which had been the number one name between 2008 and 2013, continued to drop to number five.
New York City Births by Borough of Mother’s Residence, 2015
From 2014 to 2015, the number of babies born in New York City decreased slightly, down 0.33 percent from 122,084 to 121,673 (62,455 boys and 59,218 girls). Brooklyn saw the greatest number of babies born last year, with 40,982 births. Queens came in second with 26,848 births, followed by the Bronx with 19,887 births. 17,766 babies were born in Manhattan and 5,261 were born in Staten Island.
Top 10 Names by Race/Ethnicity
Most Popular Names by Race/Ethnicity
The top 10 most popular baby names have a strong representation across racial and ethnic groups. Isabella and Sophia remained the most popular baby names for girls among Latino families. Madison retained the top spot among Black families, while Skylar displaced Ava as the second most popular name with Black families. Olivia remained the most popular name with Asian families and remained the most popular name with White families. Among boys, Latino families again chose Liam most frequently, while Black families preferred Noah. In 2015, Asian families again chose Jayden as the most popular name, while White families preferred David.
Celebrity names were influential in 2015, with many parents naming their children after television, movie, music and sport celebrities. Last year’s big draw among females included Ariana (#24), Kylie (#43), Aaliyah (#44), and Serena (#114). Movie stars, musicians and athletes’ names like Justin (#39), Leonardo (#89) and Stephen (#147), were also popular.
Some parents may have sought inspiration from film. Pixar’s Inside Out may have influenced parents’ choice of Riley (#39 for girls, #152 for boys) and Joy (#123 for girls). The blockbuster movie series, Marvel’s The Avengers, may have inspired parents. The Avengers, such as Iron Man (Anthony, #22; Tony, #167), Captain America (Steven, #75), and the Hulk (Bruce, #156), proved to be popular. The return of the Star Wars franchise may have also influenced the choice of names: Luke (#62), Leia (#136), and Finn (#141).
19th Century Names
Names that were most popular in 1898, the first year that baby names were available, are still being chosen by parents for their infants: for girls, the top three names in 1898 were Mary (#124 in 2015), Catherine (#83) and Margaret (#106); the top three names in 1898 for boys were John (#35 in 2015), William (#20), and Charles (#54).
Some New Yorkers gave their children rare names with as few as 10 parents naming their daughters Damaris, Eunice, and Shirin and sons Dimitri, and Immanuel, and Ousmane.