Bye-Bye, Boomers: This Is the Age of the Baby Bust-ers
In the last few years, young people have even many reasons to delay the costly trappings of adulthood. Pinned between rising student debt behind them and scant job opportunities before them, 34% moved back home for a period of time. With access to their parents’ garage, they needed (and could afford) fewer cars of their own. Young people now account for a smaller share of total auto purchases than they did just a few years ago.
It all leads to babies. Or, more specifically, not babies. In February this year, a Pew survey found that more than one-in-five young adults between 18 and 34 have delayed having a kid because of the economy — roughly the same proportion that postponed marriage. “Americans have had fewer babies each year since 2008, Bloomberg News reported yesterday. “Births [fell] to a 12-year low in 2011,” leading to the smallest population gain since World War II.
For a couple, pushing the pause button on weddings, houses, cars, and children is utterly sensible. (Look at the economy, after all.) But for the economy, itself, it’s disastrous.
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