Journal of Family and Economic Issues

, Volume 39, Issue 1, pp 66–72 | Cite as

Marriage and State-level Economic Outcomes

  • Robert I. Lerman
  • Joseph PriceEmail author
  • Adam Shumway
  • W. Bradford Wilcox
Original Paper


Past research has examined various state-level measures that predict state economic growth and other economic and social indicators. This research has largely ignored the potential role of family structure in contributing to state-level outcomes, despite the extensive literature on links between family structure and economic outcomes at the individual level. We estimated a state-level panel model and found that both the proportion of adults and the proportion of parents who are married are strongly related to important state-level economic outcomes, including economic growth, median household income, median personal income, and poverty.


Marriage Economic growth Poverty 

JEL Classification

J12 J13 I24 



This paper was funded by a grant from the Home Economics Project of the American Enterprise Institute and the Institute for Family Studies.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert I. Lerman
    • 1
  • Joseph Price
    • 2
    Email author
  • Adam Shumway
    • 3
  • W. Bradford Wilcox
    • 4
  1. 1.Urban InstituteWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Brigham Young UniversityProvoUSA
  3. 3.Cornell UniversityIthacaUSA
  4. 4.University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA

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