In 2006, 6,582 infants born to residents of cities in the United States with populations over 250,000 died in the first year of life. The infant mortality rate in U.S. cities was 7.2 deaths per 1,000 live births, which was higher than the rate for the Nation as a whole (6.7 per 1,000). Although the infant mortality rate in cities has consistently been higher than the rate nationwide, it declined over the past decade, and the disparity in infant mortality rates between infants in cities and the Nation as a whole decreased by 50 percent. Between 1990 and 2006, the infant mortality rate in cities declined by one-third, while the nationwide decline during the same period was approximately 25 percent. Declines in infant mortality rates since 2000, however; have been relatively small for both cities and the population as a whole.