For the second year in a row, the birthrate among American teenagers has dropped, hitting a record low point in 2009, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. So what’s the reason for the good news? Well, according to some hopeful experts, the teen birthrate dip might be one positive side effect of the recession. –KA

The Checkup in The Washington Post:

I would not have guessed that teenagers would be most responsive to the economic downturn, but maybe we need to revise our stereotypes,” said Samuel Preston, a professor of demography at the University of Pennsylvania.

Brown and others agreed:

“When money is very tight, all of us think harder about taking risks, expanding our families, taking on new responsibilities,” Brown said. “Now I know that teens may not be as savvy about money as those in their 20s and 30s—they probably don’t stress over 401(k)s like the rest of us — but many teens live with financially stressed adults, and they see neighbors and older friends losing jobs and even losing houses. So they, too, feel the squeeze and may be reacting to it by being more prudent. . . . Maybe part of tightening our belts includes keeping our zippers closed, too!”

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