Fertility decisions of Canadian immigrant households

Ana Ferrer, University of Calgary
Alicia Adsera, Princeton University

We explore the fertility decisions of Canadian immigrants using the 20% sample of the Canadian Census of Population for the years 1991, 1996, 2001 and 2006. Using women 16 to 45 years of age, we study the relevance of age at migration and family composition on fertility. We find a nonlinear relationship between age of migration and immigrant fertility - with those migrating in their late teens having the highest fertility rates when compared to the native born - and that family composition has a distinct influence among immigrants. We also investigate the intergenerational assimilation of immigrants. Using information on parental place of birth, we find that although second generation Canadians have, on average, similar fertility rates to those of the native born, there are large differences in fertility by place of origin of parents, with those of Asian descent having substantially lower fertility rates than those from Mexican, European and Middle East parentage.

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Presented in Session 34: Migrants' fertility