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New data correlates bad economy with divorce rates

Some experts believe that couples in New Jersey should be excited about the recession and the current state of the economy. However, more exciting news has been released for the soon-to-be betrothed and the more seasoned couples. According to data, divorce rates have been on the decline; not just in New Jersey, but all over the nation.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the divorce rate is on a steady decline and is 5 percent lower than it was in 1996.

The news came as researchers realized that the bad economy may be keeping marriages together. According to some, the raised unemployment rate has forced many couples to stay together possibly due to the expenses that are tied to divorce. States with higher unemployment rates have seen fewer marriages ending since the recession began, according to researchers.

Maine had the highest divorce rate in the nation at 14 percent. New York and New Jersey were on the opposite end of the spectrum, tied for the lowest divorce rate with 8.5 percent. Yet, just because New Jersey had one of the lowest divorce rates does not mean that its economy is also one of the worst in the nation.

The data indicated that the most common reason for divorce was infidelity. Next in line were communication problems and then abuse -- be it emotional, psychological or physical. Financial issues and sexual incompatibility wrapped up the top five reasons.

The data also showed that women are getting divorced at a younger age than men. Many recently divorced women were between the ages of 25 and 44; while recently divorced men often fell in the range of 35 and 54. A study of the information suggested that divorce leaves more of a negative impact on women than men with 26 percent of recently divorced women living below the poverty line while just 13 percent of men lived similarly.

Source: NBC Washington, "Divorce Rate Falling Nationwide," John Wist, Feb. 8, 2012

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