atans1

Average S’poreans smarter than scholar ministers

In Financial competency, Financial planning on 20/07/2018 at 11:10 am

They cottoned on a long time ago that having babies didn’t help them in the pursuit of the 5Cs.

It’s time for governments to accept a basic truth of the 21st century political economy: Children are an economic drag for parents …

Putin introduced major subsidies for parents. Russian fertility subsequently increased, but hardly enough to matter. The 1.7 rate of 2015 remained well below the replacement level. And an 11 percent decline in births in 2017 suggests the effects of governmental birth subsidies are fading.

That pattern is common. After the Hungarian government brought in some of the world’s most generous child subsidies, the average birth rate increased only from 1.2 to 1.5. The plain fact is that governments cannot pay people to have more babies. Lower taxes, more subsidised childcare, easier access to housing and so forth do little, and not for long.

The economic logic is impeccable. No government can afford to give parents enough money to keep children from being more cost than benefit. Kids are expensive to feed, and middle-class offspring these days absolutely need expensive holidays, extra schooling and a panoply of consumer goods.

For whatever immeasurable happiness parenting may provide, it does not bring much long-term economic gain. When kids grow up and start working for pay, they rarely put much into the extended family’s coffers. If anything, they take up residence in parental attics for longer and welcome a bit of assistance stepping onto the housing ladder. Older people also now expect support from personal savings and government benefits, not their children.

Child-rearing also hurts incomes. Moms and dads often find that the commitments of time and worry slow professional advancement. Fewer children inevitably equate to lesser impediments.

All in all, it is clear that in this modern world most people will only have children because they want to. Since monetary considerations are secondary, what economists would call the subsidy-elasticity of demand is very low.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-global-economics-breakingviews/breakingviews-hadas-global-case-of-baby-fever-is-easily-cured-idUSKBN1K813Z

 

 

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