Abstract: Much empirical evidence shows that female and male partners look alike along a variety of attributes. It is, however, unclear how this positive sorting comes about because marriage is an equilibrium outcome arising from a process that entails searching, meeting, and choosing one another. This study takes advantage of unique data to shed light on the forces driving choices at the earliest stage of a relationship. Both women and men value physical attributes, such as age and weight, and reveal that their dating choices are assortative along several traits. Importantly, meeting opportunities have a substantial role in determining dating proposals.
Journal of Human Resources – University of Wisconsin Press
Published: Apr 28, 2013