The military divorce rate decreased in 2012 to 3.5 percent, according to Pentagon statistics obtained by Military.com.
The rate decreased from 3.7 percent in 2011 but experts hesitated to call the decrease a trend.
Between 2011 and 2012, the divorce rate went down slightly in every service among male and female servicemembers of all ranks.
Enlisted female soldiers and Marines, however, continue to experience the highest rate of divorce — 9.4 percent and 9.3 percent respectively. In the Army, the female enlisted divorce rate is more than triple that of enlisted males. Still, those rates are down from the 2011 rates of 9.6 percent in Army and 9.8 percent in the Marine Corps
Benjamin Karney, a researcher with the RAND Corp. who studied military divorce, said the decrease might be a result of military conflicts winding down.
“The divorce rates are perhaps trickling down because the pace of deployment is getting slower,” he said. “Another possibility is that the economy is kind of bouncing back and military families are absolutely affected by the broader national economy, so maybe their lives are gradually getting easier.”