Intergenerational Transmission of Age at First Birth in the United States: Evidence from Multiple Surveys

Keuntae Kim, University of Wisconsin-Madison

It is well established that the timing of childbearing is transmitted from parents to children. However, little is known about how the intergenerational link has changed over time and under structural and ideological transformations associated with fertility behaviors. This study first considers changes across two birth cohorts from the NLSY in the extent to which parents’ age at first birth is transmitted to their children. Results from discrete-time event history analyses indicate that the intergenerational transmission of age at first birth between mothers and daughters as well as between mothers and sons significantly increased over the period. These results were confirmed by analyses of data from three cycles of the NSFG on five birth cohorts spanning the same time period. Over this period, age at first childbirth became increasingly younger for children born to teenage mothers and increasingly older for those born to mothers who entered parenthood after age 25.

  See paper

Presented in Session 41: Low Fertility