So a couple times during the Super Bowl, there have been commercials claiming that there are post-Super-Bowl baby booms – that is, nine months after the Super Bowl, there’s a surge in births in the city of the winning team.
This seems a lot easier to gather data for than some of the other things you hear this claimed about (blackouts, blizzards). Here’s what I could find on those:
- for blackouts: Snopes saying that the 1965 New York blackout didn’t cause a baby boom (based on a study that’s unfortunately behind a paywall).
- for tropical storms in the eastern US: low-severity storms cause more babies, high-severity storms cause less babies (Richard W. Evans, Yingyao Hu, and Zhong Zhao, “The fertility effect of catastrophe: U.S. hurricane births”, Journal of Population Economics 2008).
- nothing for blizzards, although a few articles out there suggesting that there may be a baby boom nine months after “winter storm Jonas”. If there is an effect I’d guess it might be similar to the tropical storm one.
This is easily proven or disproven, after the data wrangling (which means, let’s face it, that it’s hard). The NBER appears to have the necessary data (the tropical storm paper above links to it) although I don’t know this data set at all. Have fun, demographers!
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