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The Consequences of the COVID-19 Pandemic for Fertility and Birth Outcomes: Evidence from Spanish Birth Registers

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posted on 02.05.2022, 13:05 by Marco Cozzani, Peter FallesenPeter Fallesen, Giampiero Passaretta, Juho Härkönen, Fabrizio Bernardi

Demographic change almost never happens fast, except during wars, natural disasters, and pandemics. We ask what the joint consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic for fertility and birth outcomes are by drawing on full population administrative data from Spain. We find a surprising improvement in birth outcomes in November and to a less extent in December 2020 (8–9 months after the first wave of the pandemic) compared with monthly trends in the ten previous years (2010-2019). The improvement in birth outcomes was shortly followed by a decline in the total fertility rate (TFR), especially among women at the beginning and the end of their reproductive age. These findings are consistent with the idea that the pandemic selectively affected conception, which showed up first as a birth-outcomes improvement due to the missing conception of frail-children-to-be (including pre-term children) and then as a lowered fertility rate due to the missing conception of at-term children.

Funding

Finnish Academy of science (decision number 324613)

ROCKWOOL Foundation (grant no. 1227)

Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (grant no. 2016-07099)

History

ISSN

2002-617X

Original title

The Consequences of the COVID-19 Pandemic for Fertility and Birth Outcomes: Evidence from Spanish Birth Registers

Original language

English

Publication date

02/05/2022

Affiliation (institution of first SU-affiliated author)

310 Sociologiska institutionen | Department of Sociology

access_level

public

access_condition

PUBLIC