Time and time again, we’ve seen studies suggest that men prefer to be breadwinners and that women are gold diggers. Well, new research says that the amount of money you make doesn’t have an impact on how likely a woman is to marry you—even if you’re making a lot.
The paper, which was published in the National Bureau of Economic Research, analyzed different areas of the US that had a boom in fracking. The boom increased the job market in the oil and gas industries, leading to higher salaries for working-class men. Researchers found that the couples in these areas did have more children, but the number of marriages didn’t change at all.
One of the study’s main authors, Melissa Kearney, believed that she would find a connection between economic opportunity and family formation—meaning that more job options would lead to more marriages. But she concluded that earning more money “did not have the impact on family formation that [she’d] expected.”
That isn’t to say that money doesn’t have any affect on a woman’s likelihood to get married, however.
“It’s quite possible that this retreat from marriage has been driven in part, at least, by the declining economic position of men,” Kearney stated. “But it gives pause to the notion that reversing that trend and improving the economic position of men will reverse the decline in marriage.”
Money ain’t everything, folks. If you were banking on, well, your bank account, maybe consider working on these personality traits women do care about instead.