A separate study by the public policy nonprofit Brookings predicted 300,000 and 500,000 fewer births in 2021 as a result of the pandemic.
The Guttmacher study took particular note of December births in California, which dropped by 19% year over year in the highest populated state in the country. The same data showed the state added only 21,200 new residents through July 1, the slowest rate of growth since 1900.
“These are, to put it mildly, very large declines in historical terms,” said Philip Cohen, a sociologist at the University of Maryland, regarding the California drop. “One thing we don’t yet know is how much of this is driven by people moving around, rather than just changes in birth rates.”