Tuesday, September 13, 2016

MAP: New Data Show Same-Sex Marriage Geographic Distribution In The USA

The New York Times Upshot blog has a post today on a Working Paper (pdf) by researchers at  the U.S. Treasury department about same-sex joint married tax filers in 2013 and 2014, after the United States v. Windsor decision ended discrimination by the federal government against legally married same-sex couples (like yours truly).

By linking the tax returns of same-sex couples who filed jointly in 2014 with their Social Security records, researchers are able to give us the most accurate picture of same-sex marriages to date. And their estimate is this: In 2014 there were 183,280. same-sex marriages in America, roughly a third of 1 percent of all marriages.
Of course, implicit in this estimate is the assumption that all married couples file their returns jointly. But as a proxy for that, it’s pretty good. The Treasury Department estimates that 97.5 percent of married couples file joint returns.
One highlight of the study: Pretax household income of same-sex married couples is higher than that of heterosexual married couples. Most of that is driven by the average earnings of male same-sex couples: $176,000. On average, they make $52,000 more than married lesbian couples and $63,000 more than married straight couples.
A key factor in the reason why same-sex male couples make more than their married counterparts is where they tend to live, which is urban centers. Here's the list of locations for the top 10 places same-sex couples reside:
No surprise that San Francisco is #1 on the list (for gay couples and #3 for lesbians), but it is also interesting to note that Washington is #2 and #6 respectively. Los Angeles and Long Beach are represented well.

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