Science notes: U.S. birthrate drops to lowest level since 1920Submitted by emalvini on Sat, 12/01/2012 - 22:08
Science notes: U.S. birthrate drops to lowest level since 1920
Updated: December 1, 2012 - 4:14 PM
U.S. BIRTHRATE DROPS TO LOWEST LEVEL SINCE '20
The U.S. birthrate plunged last year to a record low, with the decline being led by immigrant women hit hard by the recession, according to a study by the Pew Research Center.
The overall birthrate declined by 8 percent between 2007 and 2010, with a decrease of 6 percent among U.S.-born women and 14 percent among foreign-born women. The decline for Mexican immigrant women was 23 percent. The overall birthrate is now at its lowest since 1920, the earliest year with reliable records. A continuing decline would challenge long-held assumptions that births to immigrants will help maintain the U.S. population and provide the taxpaying workforce needed to support the baby boomer generation. The U.S. birthrate -- 63.2 births per 1,000 women of child-bearing age -- has fallen to just over half of what it was at its peak in 1957. While the declining has not yet created the stark imbalances in such countries as Japan, it should serve as a wake-up call for policymakers, said Roberto Suro, a professor of public policy at UCLA.