Expand chart
Data: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. fertility rate has reached a record low, and the total number of births in 2018 was the lowest it has been in more than 30 years, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control.

Why it matters: The long-term economic implications of a shrinking future workforce could be dire, as Axios has reported. It's important to remember, however, these trends are also a result of progress — a falling number of teenage pregnancies, the education and empowerment of women, more accessible birth control, and lower child mortality rates, demographers say.

By the numbers: While birth rates fell for younger women in 2018, they rose slightly for women in their late 30s and early 40s, according to the newest CDC data. Women waiting longer to start their families has been a growing, global trend.

  • The total fertility rate, the number of babies a woman of childbearing age is expected to have over her lifetime, is currently at 1.72 — 2% lower than in 2017. It's also notably below the 2.1 fertility rate required for one generation to perfectly replace the next.

Between the lines: The U.S.' high levels of immigration have helped buoy the population. It's a key reason the U.S. is in a better place than other nations with falling fertility rates that are beginning to see the impact on their societies and economies, such as Japan, Hungary and Spain.

  • But immigration might not always be enough to fully compensate for low fertility rates, Global Aging Institute president Richard Jackson and sociology professor Irene Bloemraad from University of California Berkeley told Axios last year.

The big picture People are living longer, growing up slower and delaying marriage, but when it comes to fertility, there is a biological clock. As women wait longer to have kids, they tend to have fewer of them, demographers have told Axios. These demographic realities are changing the way we live our lives and could ultimately lead to slowed economic growth as the costs for caring for a large, elderly generation fall on a smaller young workforce.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 19,720,406 — Total deaths: 728,176 — Total recoveries — 11,970,444Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 5,032,299 — Total deaths: 162,751 — Total recoveries: 1,643,118 — Total tests: 61,080,587Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi says states don't have the funds to comply with Trump's executive order on unemployment — Mnuchin says Trump executive orders were cleared by Justice Department.
  4. Public health: Ex-FDA head: U.S. will "definitely" see 200,000 to 300,000 virus deaths by end of 2020 — Fauci says chances are "not great" that COVID-19 vaccine will be 98% effective.
  5. Schools: Nine test positive at Georgia school where photo showing packed hallway went viral — How back-to-school is playing out in the South as coronavirus rages on.

Poll shows Biden leading Trump in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania

Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

Joe Biden leads President Trump 48% to 42% in Wisconsin and 49% to 43% in Pennsylvania, according to the latest CBS/YouGov Battleground Tracker poll.

Why it matters: Trump's surprise wins in the two states, where many voters broke his way after deciding the week before the election, helped propel him to an Electoral College victory over Hillary Clinton. Trump won Wisconsin with 47% of the vote and Pennsylvania with 48% in 2016, according to the New York Times.

Blumenthal calls classified briefing on Russian interference "absolutely chilling"

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D- Conn.) called on the Trump administration to declassify intelligence detailing Russian efforts to influence the 2020 elections, telling MSNBC on Sunday that the classified briefing lawmakers received about the Kremlin's activities last week was "absolutely chilling."

The big picture: National Counterintelligence and Security Center Director William Evanina said in a statement Friday that the Russian government is "using a range of measures" to "denigrate" Joe Biden ahead of the election. China and Iran would prefer that Trump is defeated, according to Evanina.