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Some suspect that the downward trend may peter out or even reverse itself. It also broke down total fertility rates by state, which ranged from a high of 2, in South Dakota to a low of 1, in Washington, D. Part of that variation may be related to the passage of the Affordable Care Act, Strobino said.

Fertility Decline in Western Europe - PRI

Another possible explanation for the variation may be that women with more education tend to live in particular states, Strobino said. ET : An earlier version of this article misstated the number of births needed to maintain a population at current levels.

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It is 2, births per 1, women of childbearing age over their lifetime, not per year. Impeachment Inquiry Politics U. Sections U. Follow NBC News. Breaking News Emails Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings. Let our news meet your inbox. The news and stories that matters, delivered weekday mornings.

Sign Up. Health Birth rates keep falling for U. In , Spain had a total fertility rate of 1. Ever fewer rich countries maintain a replacement fertility rate: out of 63 current high income countries for which the World Bank has data, only 22 saw total fertility rates below 2. Historically, an important factor keeping birth rates in the United States high was immigration, which has brought in young people who desire more children than native-born Americans. But because the overall growth rate of the immigrant population has declined and a larger proportion of migrants now come from Asia than Latin America, births to new arrivals are slowing.

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Migrants from Asia have lower fertility rates than the native-born population. And fertility rates among Hispanics in America have been falling. The recent recession has also played a role. When Janet Currie and Hannes Schwandt of Northwestern University looked at the effect of unemployment rates on fertility they found that high state-level unemployment reduces the rate of child-birth amongst women in their early twenties at the time of high unemployment but also reduces their total fertility through to the age of Cross-country analysis by Katharina Wesolowski and Tommy Ferrarini of Stockholm University similarly found that unemployment reduces fertility while higher female labour force participation is associated with higher birth rates.

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They suggest that general family-support policies like child payments have little effect on birth rates. But support that directly helps people combine work and parenthood, including leave for new parents, does have an impact.

That suggests that policies that make it easier for women to work and have children at the same time not only encourage more women to work, but more women to have children. If America wants to avoid a rapid population decline —and the challenges that presents to fiscal stability and economic growth—it should find ways to encourage more women into the workforce and treat them better once they get there. Correction November 1st : This article previously stated that Hannes Schwandt was affiliated with Princeton.

He is actually at Northwestern University. This has been amended. Join them. Subscribe to The Economist today. Media Audio edition Economist Films Podcasts. New to The Economist?

South Korea's fertility rate falls to record low

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Decline in Fertility Rates, Recession Cause Global Social Security Problems

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