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Modeling American Marriage Patterns

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  • David E. Bloom
  • Neil G. Bennett

Abstract

This paper investigates the application of the three-parameter, Coale-McNeil marriage model and some related hyper-parameterized specifications to data on the first marriage patterns of American women. Because the model is parametric, it can be used to estimate the parameters of the marriage process, free of censoring bias, for cohorts that have yet to complete their first marriage experience. Empirical evidence from three surveys is reported on the ability of the model to replicate and project observed marriage behavior. The results indicate that the model can be a useful tool for analyzing cohort marriage data and that recent cohorts are showing relatively strong proclivities to both delay and forego marriage. Consistent with earlier work, the results also indicate that education is a powerful covariate of the timing of first marriage and that race is a powerful covariate of its incidence.

Suggested Citation

  • David E. Bloom & Neil G. Bennett, 1990. "Modeling American Marriage Patterns," NBER Working Papers 3425, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3425
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Robert Schoen & William Urton & Karen Woodrow & John Bai, 1985. "Marriage and divorce in twentieth century American cohorts," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 22(1), pages 101-114, February.
    2. Keeley, Michael C, 1979. "An Analysis of the Age Pattern of First Marriage," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 20(2), pages 527-544, June.
    3. Willard Rodgers & Arland Thornton, 1985. "Changing patterns of first marriage in the United States," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 22(2), pages 265-279, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ryuichi Kaneko, 2003. "Elaboration of the Coale-McNeil Nuptiality Model as The Generalized Log Gamma Distribution," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 9(10), pages 223-262, November.
    2. repec:dem:demres:v:38:y:2018:i:47 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Neil Bennett & David Bloom & Cynthia Miller, 1995. "The influence of nonmarital childbearing on the formation of first marriages," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 32(1), pages 47-62, February.
    4. William Axinn & Cynthia Link & Robert Groves, 2011. "Responsive Survey Design, Demographic Data Collection, and Models of Demographic Behavior," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 48(3), pages 1127-1149, August.
    5. Maria Winkler-Dworak & Henriette Engelhardt-W├Âlfler, 2004. "On the tempo and quantum of first marriages in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 10(9), pages 231-264, May.
    6. Bonilla, Roberto & Kiraly, Francis, 2013. "Marriage wage premium in a search equilibrium," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 107-115.
    7. Jelnov, Pavel, 2018. "A New Estimator of Search Duration and Its Application to the Marriage Market," IZA Discussion Papers 11466, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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