One in 5 Women Out-Earn Their Husbands

Pew study finds marriage 'now a better deal for men'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 19, 2010 6:16 AM CST
Among people aged 30 to 44, both husband and wife were equally well educated in around half of couples and the wife was better educated in 28% of marriages.   (Shutter Stock)

(Newser) – Men who tie the knot have been getting an increasingly sweeter deal as women become better-paid and better-educated, according to Pew Research. Researchers—who dub the trend the "rise of wives"—say that the percentage of marriages in which the woman is the higher-earning partner has exploded from 4% in 1970 to 22% today.

And among those 30- to 44-year-old couples—the first generation in which more women have college degrees than men—the husband is now the better-educated one just 19% of the time. "What's radically changed is that marriage now is a better deal for men," report co-author Richard Fry tells the Washington Post. "Now when men marry, often their spouse works quite a bit. Often she is better-educated than the guy." Thing is, he's a little less likely to be married at all: in 1970, 84% of those 30 to 44 were married; it's down to 60%.

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