3/23/12: Marriage Numbers in Decline

Nearly 40 percent of women have never been married, and fewer are in a first marriage, that’s according to a new government report that takes a detailed look at first marriages and their chances for survival. The highest percentage of women who have never married was among blacks followed by U.S.-born Hispanics, Asians and whites.

The data reflect not only the “delay in getting married for the first time” but also that more people are cohabiting and that nearly one in two marriages break up within 20 years.

The financial consequences reflected in the trend for society are staggering. The Institute for American Values estimates that family fragmentation costs U.S. taxpayers at least $112 billion each and every year, or more than $1 trillion each decade.