Wives Are Out-Earning Their Spouses

Cheryl Lock
Posted

women out-earn spousesLet’s hear it for the girls!

According to a report published by the National Center for Family and Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, a growing percentage of wives in dual-earning relationships are now out-earning their husbands.

According to USA Today, the study found that wives in dual-earning couples were contributing a greater share of the couple’s total earnings (up from 37% in 2006 to 40% in 2011), and that the percentage of wives earning a greater share of income than their partners rose from 13% to 16% in the same timeframe.

On the flip side, the survey also found that couples in which both partners worked declined from 69% to 65% from 2006 to 2011, and those with one breadwinner rose from 27% to 30%.

Of course, the reasons for the increase in women’s contributions could be many. Experts point to the fact that men who lose their jobs could be rehired into lesser-paying ones, and the fact that partner’s earnings fluctuate over time, meaning there’s a good chance things could revert back again next year.

Unfortunately, the increase in earnings by a wife does not translate into higher economic gains for the overall couple, either. In fact, the report found that between 2006 and 2011 the incomes of two-income married couples declined ever-so-slightly from $79,206 to $79,100.