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Economy Stunting Birth Rate? Record Low in 2009

3 years ago
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Are Americans holding off on having kids because of the bad economy? It sure looks that way. The National Center for Health Statistics reports the U.S. birth rate fell by 2.7 percent last year to the lowest level in a century.

Taking into account the population, which grew, the birth rate in 2009 was 13.5 for every 1,000 people, the Associated Press said. That marked a second straight year of fall-off and a drop from 14.3 in 2007, before the full force of the recession hit. More babies were born in 2007 than in any year in the nation's history.

"It's a good-sized decline for one year. Every month is showing a decline from the year before," Stephanie Venture, the demographer who oversaw the center's report, told the Associated Press. "It doesn't matter how you look at: fertility declined."

Word of the slowdown in births -- 4.13 million last year, compared to 4.25 million in 2008 -- came as the government revised growth in the economy downward for the second quarter. The Commerce Department, after making adjustments, said the Gross Domestic Product grew only 1.6 percent during the three months ending in June, not the initial estimate of 2.4 percent.

Johns Hopkins Sociology Professor Andrew Cherlin told the AP, "when the economy is bad and people are uncomfortable with their financial future, they tend to postpone having children. We saw that in the Great Depression ... and we're seeing it in the Great Recession today." A slowdown in immigration to the U.S. could also be a factor, the news agency said.

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3 Comments

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sheryl3145

Maybe people are just getting more responsible. Overpopulation is the root of all our problems.

September 02 2010 at 12:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
spzcowby

That's right, Americans are holding off having kids, NOT Foreign Nationals that have invaded out country, stolen our jobs, identities, and social services...and to boot, we pay for them too.

August 27 2010 at 9:45 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
cae973

What a stupid article..of course the economy is affecting the birth rate. When people are unemployed, underemployed or just terrified of losing their jobs they understandably think its not a good time to have a baby. They either don't have health insurance at all due to job loss or being forced to take part time jobs or they are so afraid of becoming unemployed with no way then to pay for the medical costs of pregnancy and delivery along with the costs of raising a child so the only ones who don't have to worry about any of this are the illegals who continue to have kids since they get free medical coverage for the birth and for the child, along with foodstamps ect ..you know all those nice freebies we American citizens don't get!

August 27 2010 at 8:51 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
Les

The reason the population is decreasing each year is because GMO-fed animals no longer reproduce after the third generation of eating GMO food. Three generations and no more babies (according to Russian scientists).

August 27 2010 at 8:33 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Annalee

The birth rate onlyl effects those that actually work for a day's pay. Then there are those that for every baby, they get more welfare!

August 27 2010 at 8:31 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
DawnellDaugherty

Yes a major downturn in the economy has it's affects on almost everything.It makes it harder to plan or take care of children,when it's uncertain from day to day,whether there will be job losses.An unstable economy puts a huge hold on life.

August 27 2010 at 8:22 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
sysaphus71

HECK, WHOSE GOT THE ENERGY AFTER HAVING TO WORK 6 AND 7 DAYS A WEEK TO KEEP THE LIGHTS ON!

August 27 2010 at 7:02 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply

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