After the highs of the Baby Boom in the mid-20th century and the lows of the Baby Bust in the 1970s, birth rates were relatively stable for nearly 50 years. But during the Great Recession, from 2007-2009, birth rates declined sharply – and they’ve kept falling. In 2007, average birth rates were right around 2 children per woman. In a recent study, we analyzed how changes in childbearing goals may have contributed to recent declines in birth rates in the United States. Our study can’t directly address why birth rates are going down, but we can propose some explanations based on other research.