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Americans are having fewer children — but it's not for the reason you think

Why the birth rate in the U.S. is falling
Why the birth rate in the U.S. is falling

Children are really expensive to raise in the United States and economists say people may be taking that into consideration when deciding whether to have kids.

Fertility rates dropped ahead of the Great Recession in 2007, suggesting having children may be an indicator of people's confidence about the future.

Despite this, public opinion polling suggests that financial anxiety is not actually deterring Americans from having children. A Pew Research Center poll found that there was a modest increase between 2018 and 2021 in Americans ages 18-44 years old who say it is unlikely they would have kids, but there was no one reason that stood out as their reason why.

"When people take time to figure out what they want, and they know why they want it, they may decide not to become a parent because of finances," said Ann Davidman, a marriage and family therapist who helps people get clear on whether they actually want children. "My guess is that wouldn't be the only reason."

Watch the video above to learn why the birth rate is falling in the U.S. and what the Covid pandemic may mean for future fertility rates.

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