Socioeconomic Change and First Union Formation in Canada

Darcy W. Hango, McGill University
Celine Le Bourdais, McGill University

In this paper we examine the transition to adulthood, with a specific interest in transitions into conjugal relationships, and how socioeconomic differences impact upon the decision to cohabit, marry or remain single. We use a new Canadian longitudinal data set, the Youth in Transition Survey (YITS) to study first union formation among young adults aged 18 to 20 at two different time points (in 2000 and in 2002). We address two relationships: (1) the link between socioeconomic status of origin (measured by parental education and occupation) and the frequency and pace that youth choose to marry, cohabit or remain single; and (2) the effect of an individual's own education, income, and employment status on the likelihood of cohabiting, marrying, or remaining single, as well as the pace at which they enter each of these states.

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Presented in Poster Session 2: Family, Households, Unions; Data, Methods, Study Design