By Janet Adamy of The WSJ. Excerpts:
"The share of Americans getting married has fallen to its lowest level on record, according to government figures released Wednesday that reflect how economic insecurity and changing norms are eroding the institution.
The U.S. marriage rate fell 6% in 2018, with 6.5 new unions formed for every 1,000 people"
"That was the lowest rate since the federal government began keeping data in 1867"
"marriage rates plunged near the start of the Great Depression in the 1930s"
"The marriage rate began a near-steady decline in 1982 that lasted until 2009"
"Many Americans are opting to form households without tying the knot, and strained finances have been a top reason"
"The fallout from Covid-19 is likely to further discourage marriage in the near term since financial insecurity" [is one of] the "matrimonial deterrents"
"A lot of it is the economy" said one expert
There were 10.6 marriages for every 1,000 people in 1982. With 6.5 in 2018, that is a drop of 38.7%. But the economy picked up in 1983 and expanded until 1990. Yet marriage rates kept falling. They kept falling in the boom of the late 90s and in the years before the 2007-09 recession.
A number of women who put off having babies after the 2007-09 recession are forgoing them altogether; more educated women and student debt also contribute to decline in birth rates (2018)
The Economy Affects The Birth Rate (2010)
Did The Recession Help Lower The Birth Rate? (2011)
U.S. Fertility Rate Hits Lowest Level on Record (2012)
Study of Men’s Falling Income Cites Single Parents (2013)