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Duration of Residence in the United States and the Fertility of U.S. Immigrants

Kathleen Ford
The International Migration Review
Vol. 24, No. 1 (Spring, 1990), pp. 34-68
DOI: 10.2307/2546671
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2546671
Page Count: 35
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Duration of Residence in the United States and the Fertility of U.S. Immigrants
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Abstract

This paper analyzes census data on the fertility of U.S. immigrants to study trends in fertility after migration. The results showed that immigrant fertility may rise after arrival in the new country perhaps because immigrants are making up for births or marriages that may have been postponed due to the move. After a period of time, the fertility of immigrants may fall and as immigrants become more assimilated to the new country their fertility may come to be similar to cohorts of longer duration. These relationships were examined in a multivariate context so that variations between groups in socioeconomic status, fertility in the country of origin, age and marital status could be controlled. Relationships were studied for all U.S. immigrants as well as for subgroups defined by country or region of origin. The results indicate that simple measures of immigrant fertility that do not consider duration of residence are likely to be misleading if used to draw conclusions about the fertility impacts of immigration and advisable policy interventions.

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