A new analysis of census data suggests growth in the number of working wives over the past 40 years has resulted in a shift in who gets the biggest economic boost from marriage.
Historically, marriage was the surest route to financial security for women. But a Pew Research Center report says it's now men that benefit most.
A larger share of today's men are married to women whose education and income exceed their own, and a larger share of women are married to men with less education and income. Back in 1970, the reverse was true.
Median household income rose 60 percent between 1970 and 2007 for married men, married women and unmarried women, but only 16 percent for unmarried men.
The Pew researchers noted that the economic downturn is reinforcing the gender reversal trends, with men losing jobs more often than women.