Suffer the children: fertility rate record low

Australia is running out of “earthern vessels” as the ABS releases the latest fertility rate – now at a record all time low:

The gist:

Australia registered a total of 294,369 births in 2020 resulting in a total fertility rate (TFR) of 1.58 babies per woman according to the latest figures released from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

ABS Director of Demography, Beidar Cho said: “The record low total fertility rate can be attributed to fewer births and birth registrations in most jurisdictions in a year marked by COVID-19 disruptions.”

The Northern Territory recorded the highest TFR (1.86 babies per woman) closely followed by Tasmania (1.77 babies per woman) and Western Australia (1.70 babies per woman), while Victoria recorded the lowest rate (1.43 babies per woman).

“In 2020, the total fertility rate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers was 2.25 babies per woman. There were 22,016 births registered (7 per cent of all births) where at least one parent was an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australian,” Ms Cho said.

That’s still ca. 300,000 new births each year, putting pressure on hospitals around the country, but at least its dropping:

Due to economic and social constraints, women are having children later and later in life:

And indeed the fertility rate for older mothers is slowly rising – nearly tripling for those aged 40-44 years – as this continues the push to a near 32 year old median age of first-time mothers:

Cue the Liberals suggesting either more baby bonuses or more immigration to plug the “gap”, without of course investing in healthcare, hospitals, roads, police, power generation, housing stock etc etc etc ad nauseam.

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  1. The Travelling PhantomMEMBER

    House prices…if young family can’t get the security of having a roof over their heads, they won’t pursue or at least delay having babies

    • GonzificusMEMBER

      This is the only variable I could think of, and it knocks on into everything else. Cant take a few years off to look after the young children because 2 FTE are needed to service the mortgage, & getting back into the workforce is a hurdle, and all for the want of a secure roof over your head, and not wanting to get to the end of your life without a secure home.
      I expect this will get worse before it gets better, and to get better will require a collapse of the current system.

      • it also stops people starting their own (small) business, as houses

        1) Tend to be used as security to launch small businesses.
        2) When the mortgage is small, business owners can tolerate the small(zero) income in the formative years of the business.

        Then the risk appetite of people in their 40’s and 50’s when they do get the mortgage to a tolerable level??

        Add it the level of discretionary income withdrawn from other areas in the economy, why bodies like the BCA aren’t decrying a bubble… well says all you need to know.

      • Yes I knew many women even 20 years ago who were trapped in rentals still in Sydney who reached their forties realising they would never have children. As unable to buy a home anywhere near their work.

    • That appears to be the game. A bipartisan screwover of young Australians. A special mention of the Greens who are also in on the act in favouring the prosperity of poorer immigrants over young Australians.

  2. Congratulations to the landed gentry!

    Now we’re into geriatric pregnancies, maybe we should encourage the boomers to have few extra kids, at least they can afford to put a roof over their heads.

  3. Mother is accused of selling her daughter, 21, for $15,000 to an Uber driver who wed her in a lavish Afghan ceremony in Australia before slitting her throat two months later when she refused to consummate the marriage
    By Olivia Day and Brittany Chain For Dail

    Happy clappy LNP/labor/greens just have to import some more multicultural v!brants and give them free houses plus perks that your taxes pay for

  4. The number of babies and LTI are inversely proportional. Chris, could you plot LTI into the first and third charts? LTI 5.5 plus is a baby killer with a time lag. Vested interest will tell you: there is more choice today, wagyu and shiraz, avocados, etc. There is some truth in those statements but, there was some truth in ” Arbeith macht frei” also.
    China can’t import babies and the only way they can increase fertelity rates is to lower the price of basic human needs, which includes shelter. Hence I wouldn’t put much money into iron ore.

  5. Tassie TomMEMBER

    Unless the global fertility rate falls below 2 at some stage we’re all doomed. Even if we go carbon neutral and zero pollution. At least Australians are doing our bit.

    Now we just need every politician and other “leader” in business and society to stop cheerleading every time a state’s or city’s population grows. We should be encouraging slow population decline.

    • “Unless the global fertility rate falls below 2 at some stage we’re all doomed”

      Then every donation to alleviate poverty is 3rd world sh!tholes is a crime against humanity.

      Stop it.

      • Frank DrebinMEMBER

        The more educated and economically secure women are in these countries, the less kids they have. Pretty undeniable cause and effect.

        • We still need a rate of 2.1

          “There is no such thing as a successful species which chooses not to breed”

          That’s not success.

    • Unless the global fertility rate falls below 2 at some stage we’re all doomed.

      And it could probably stand to be under it for a while before we got anywhere near “we’re all doomed” territory.

      If nobody had any kids for a decade, we’d wind world population back to maybe the mid-2000s.

    • I’ve heard that many times before. Every time it was from nice, intelligent, and compassionate individuals, who should really multiply. Never heard from some bimbo whose tubes should have been cut the first time he had an erection.

  6. This is good news. We have too many people here and all over the world. Fewer people would be a good thing. I’m not calling for the end of the human race, just a reduction to a sustainable level.

    • There’s no business case for your new enterprise under current legislation. However, this may change.

    • Agree. From ecological footprint analysis, the Earth can sustainably support perhaps one to two billion people at a decent standard of living. We are only getting by now because so many of us are living in appalling poverty and because we are in overshoot, consuming renewable resources faster than they can be replenished and degrading the environment in the long tern for the sake of immediate consumption. See William Rees on this (one of the developers of ecological footprint analysis.

      As is clear from the video, the real growth in impact since 1960 has come from the middle income countries, who have had massive increases in population and consumption, even though per capita emissions are not that high.