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Jacob and Sophia, again

Published: Monday, May 27, 2013 1:23 p.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, May 27, 2013 2:36 p.m. CDT

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Parents who chose the name Jacob for their cooing bundle in blue last year should not be surprised if that child ends up going through his school years as "Jacob W." or "Jacob C."

For the 14th year in a row, parents have chosen the name Jacob for their sons more often than any other boy's name, according to a newly-released report by the Social Security Administration.

Girls' names, which vary more often than boys' names, also held steady this year, with parents naming their newborn daughters Sophia more than any other name for the second year in a row.

The Top 10 boys and girls names remained the same except for Liam on the boys’ side and Elizabeth on the girls' side.

Liam, which had not been in the Top 10 last year, climbed all the way to No. 6, knocking Daniel off the chart. The Top 10 boys’ names, in order, are Jacob, Mason, Ethan, Noah, William, Liam, Jayden, Michael, Ethan, Alexander and Aiden.

Elizabeth, which was also not in the Top 10 last year, slipped into 10th place, nudging Chloe off the chart. On the girls’ side are, in order, Sophia, Emma, Isabella, Olivia, Ava, Emily, Abigail, Mia, Madison and Elizabeth.

The information is based on a 100 percent sample of Social Security card applications as of the end of February 2013.

Sometimes name preferences can vary by state, but this year Illinois parents followed the trends.

In Illinois in 2011, Alexander and Sophia topped the charts. Last year, Jacob and Sophia were the top choices, with 758 parents choosing Jacob and 955 parents naming their baby girls Sophia.

The Top 10 boys’ names in Illinois, in order, are Jacob, Alexander, Noah, Michael, Ethan, Mason, Liam, Anthony, Jayden and Daniel.

The Top 10 girls’ names in Illinois, in order, are Sophia, Olivia, Isabella, Emma, Ava, Emily, Mia, Abigail, Sofia and Elizabeth.

In addition to the top baby names, Social Security’s website offers lists of baby names for each year since 1880, and the “Change in Name Popularity” page. This year’s winners for biggest jump in popularity in the Top 500 are Major and Arya. The second fastest riser for boys was Gael, and for girls, Perla. Both names most likely are on the rise due to the increase in the Spanish-speaking population in the United States. 

Social Security started compiling baby name lists in 1997, and the agency’s website offers lists of baby names for each year since 1880.

In the last 100 years, the male name Michael has held the top spot most often (44 times), while the female name Mary has been ranked No. 1 43 times during those years.

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