Reduced Fertility and the Economy

When fertility is low, economies have an unfair advantage, and a society with a low birth rate is more likely to have an advantage in a number of economic indicators, including human capital accumulation, schooling, and income per capita. The opposite is true when fertility is high. In the last few decades, the pendulum has swung in the other direction, and countries with high fertility have an unfair advantage in many other areas of the world.

Economic growth

In this paper, we analyze the mechanisms by which the reduction of fertility improves the economy. One significant channel is the increase in the supply of labor. Another is the accumulation of human capital. Both of these channels are permanent. Moreover, the age structure effects are transitory. And finally, we analyze the implications of these phenomena on economic growth. We discuss the role of fertility and population size in determining economic development. The authors conclude that reduced fertility is a beneficial policy for the economy.

Human capital accumulation

The standard theory of the relationship between fertility and human capital accumulation shows that when income rises, fertility decreases while investments in human capital increase. This model assumes that the ratio of high earners to low earners varies across cultures, and that the child’s future abilities are determined by the parents’ family background and educational attainment. This model also highlights an additional externality source, the age structure of families. However, there are several limitations to the standard model.


The relationship between schooling and fertility is complex and highly context-specific. While a modest level of schooling may reduce the availability of children for household production, it may also lead women to invest more in quality over quantity. These questions are a focus of current research, and the relationship between schooling and fertility will be discussed. There are also underlying causal mechanisms. In this article, we review the most recent findings from the literature on schooling and fertility.

Income per capita

While the economic growth associated with higher income is important, the same cannot be said for the fertility rate. Fertility rates are high in poor countries because few women have higher education. In developing countries, the rate is even higher than that. In addition, women lack tertiary education. So, the education of women is a necessary factor for population growth. As the world’s population grows, so must women’s education. The correlation between education and fertility is not exact, but it is strong.

Childbearing decisions

The decision to have a child is influenced by many factors including economic preconditions, social status of the parents, physical health, and subjective norms. While some factors are universally associated with childbearing, others vary significantly across countries, sex, and age. Understanding these differences is crucial for policymakers and advocates of family planning. However, the reasons behind these differences vary considerably and are often a mixture of social, cultural, and economic factors.

Market conditions

Recent research has suggested that economic conditions affect fertility. In addition to social and cultural factors, changes in the economy can affect women’s employment prospects, contraception technologies, and public policy. Carl Haub, an economist at the Population Reference Bureau, points to the Great Depression and the oil bust of the early 1970s as examples of periods when economic conditions negatively affected fertility. The researchers also found a strong relationship between fertility and economic conditions in the United States and Europe.