Net Natural Increase
Net natural increase — the difference between the numbers of births and deaths — is cyclical, mostly due to a decrease in the number of births during economic recessions when some people postpone having children. Nationally and in Arizona, net natural increase peaked in 2007. The decrease between 2007 and 2011 was a stunning 35 percent in Arizona and 23 percent nationally. The larger decline in Arizona likely results from the state’s more severe recession and from the implementation of the “employer sanctions law” at the beginning of 2008. The law caused nearly 100,000 undocumented immigrants (who are young with a high birth rate) to leave the state during the first year of the law.
In 2012, net natural increase fell a little further in Arizona; data are not yet available nationally. However, the figure rose in Maricopa County but feel sharply in Pima County.