15 States Where the Birth Rate Is Declining

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Think people are having more kids these days?

The playgrounds in your neighborhood may be packed, but the overall trend is clear—American women are having fewer and fewer children.

Between 2009 and 2013, the number of women per 1,000 giving birth in each 12-month period declined in 39 of the 50 states, new Census data shows.

Mississippi saw the steepest decline, with a 17% drop in the birth rate. In 2009, 64 out of 1,000 Mississippi women between the ages of 15 and 50 gave birth. In 2013, that number had fallen to 53. Similar declines were seen in Alaska, Tennessee, New Jersey, Iowa, Illinois and Idaho, all falling between 11% and 14%.

Why care? A declining birth rate can signal economic trouble down the road, with fewer young people entering the workforce. And U.S. fertility rates were already moving downward when the Great Recession hit. Demographers were particularly alarmed when the federal Centers for Disease Control announced the 2013 fertility rate for the United States had reached another record low: 62.9 births per 1,000 women.


 

BabyBust

 

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Women between the ages of 15 and 50 with births in a 12-month period; the rate is per 1,000 women.
Source: U.S. Census, American Community Survey, 3-year estimates 2009-2013

Rate per 1,000 Women 2009 Rate per 1,000 Women 2010 Rate per 1,000 Women 2011 Rate per 1,000 Women 2012 Rate per 1,000 Women 2013 Percent Change in Rate 2009-2013
Mississippi 64 63 59 57 53 -17%
Alaska 72 73 73 66 62 -14%
Tennessee 62 65 62 57 54 -13%
New Jersey 56 55 52 51 49 -13%
Iowa 61 61 57 56 54 -11%
Illinois 56 57 55 52 50 -11%
Idaho 76 72 71 67 68 -11%
Arkansas 60 58 56 54 54 -10%
Nevada 60 61 57 57 54 -10%
W. Virginia 50 50 47 46 45 -10%
Arizona 62 60 58 57 56 -10%
Florida 53 52 49 48 48 -9%
Texas 66 66 63 61 60 -9%
California 57 57 55 53 52 -9%
Kentucky 59 56 55 54 54 -8%

 

Think the economics of parenthood today may have something to do with it? You might want to read our recent study on the True Cost of Raising a Child.

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Shutterstock photo by stefansonn.