Abstract

This paper investigates the effect of relative income on marriage. Accounting flexibly for absolute income, the ratio between a man's income and a local reference group median is a strong predictor of marital status, but only for low-income men. Relative income affects marriage even among those living with a partner. A 10 percent higher reference group income is associated with a 2 percent reduction in marriage. We propose an identity model to explain the results.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1548-8004
Print ISSN
0022-166X
Pages
pp. 482-517
Launched on MUSE
2012-04-04
Open Access
No
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