Cultural changes about whether and when to marry, the fact that two-thirds of first marriages are preceded by cohabitation and the recession’s financial fallout — including unemployment and underemployment — fueled the wedding decline. Projections from the private company Demographic Intelligence of Charlottesville, Va., says the signs are right for a temporary boost in weddings.
The company projects a 4% increase in the number of weddings since 2009, reaching 2.168 million this year; 2.189 million in 2014. Depending on the economic recovery, the report projects a continuing increase to 2.208 million in 2015.
Although it finds marriage numbers are stagnant or declining among those with a high school education or less, younger Americans, and the less affluent, numbers are rising among women ages 25-34, the college-educated and the affluent, which is where “short-term increases in weddings will be concentrated,” says this analysis, released exclusively to USA TODAY. It’s based on a variety of measures, including unemployment and consumer confidence, which reflect the relationship between financial security and the transition to marriage.
“Declines in weddings are likely to set in towards the end of the decade, even though the number of young adults is increasing, because of the nation’s ongoing retreat from marriage,” the report notes.
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