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Marriage is voluntary, and men and women compete when they try to find the best mate.
In other words, how many eligible men and women are there, and how do they compare in terms of key demographic characteristics? Both quantity and quality of available unmarried adults are likely to matter on the marriage market. research suggests that the pool of economically attractive men is linked to marriage formation patterns.
Looking at the overall marriage market, which includes both never married and ly married adults those who are divorced, separated or widowedthe sex ratio is fairly balanced. Within this broader unmarried population, there are sharp differences between the pool of adults that has never been married and those who were ly married. Men out women by a large margin among never-married adults men for every womenbut men are outed by women among ly married adults 71 men for every women.
This is mainly because women are more likely than men to be divorced or widowed. And much of the research that has been done on marriage markets has focused on the ratio of employed men to women. When the employment status of unmarried men is taken intothe of men compared with women decreases dramatically. Among all unmarried adults, the ratio of employed men to all women goes down—for every 65 employed unmarried men, there are unmarried women.
Among those who have never been married, the ratio is 84 employed men per women, and for those who have ly been married it is 47 employed men for every women. In addition to employment status, age is an important factor influencing the male-to-female ratio among the unmarried. At age 25, there is a surplus of men— for every women. The male-to-female ratio declines with age.
Around age 40, the of unmarried men and women is roughly equivalent. After age 45, the of unmarried men declines steadily, and by age 64, there are about 62 unmarried men for every unmarried women.
This happens mainly because women are much more likely than men to be currently divorced, separated or widowed, especially after age Ratios presented here illustrate how men and women on the marriage market compare only in terms of key demographic characteristics.
The actual marriage market is much more complex than these ratios. Never-married adults are not necessarily restricting their choices to those who have never been married before.
Young adults might marry someone who is not in their age group. Location also matters in the mate selection process, as people often search within the area where they live, and the sex ratio and job market can be quite different from one geographic area to another. Are you a Core Conservative? A Solid Liberal?
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