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That suggests the importance of the diversity of the marriage market, but at the other end of the spectrum, Livingston says, “the story is not as clear.” One one hand, Asheville, North Carolina, where only 3 percent of newlyweds are intermarried and 85 percent of the population is white, fits with the idea that diversity—or lack thereof—drives intermarriage rates.“But on the other hand, Jackson, Mississippi, is relatively diverse, there are relatively high shares of both whites and blacks in the marriage market, yet intermarriage is quite low there, at 3 percent,” Livingston says.Jackson, Mississippi, and Asheville, North Carolina, tie at 3 percent for the lowest share of intermarried newlyweds.Intermarriage is increasingly common in part due to changing attitudes concerning race, and in part to the growing share of Asian-American and Hispanic people in the United States.Overall, there has been a dramatic increase in interracial marriage.In 2015, 10 percent of all married Americans were married to someone of a different race or ethnicity. Seventeen percent of all weddings performed in 2015 were interracial, up from 7 percent in 1980. In 2015, 18 percent of new marriages in metropolitan areas were interracial, compared with 11 percent of newlyweds outside of metropolitan areas.
Supreme Court struck down laws against interracial marriage, interracial couples are more common than ever before—especially in cities.“If you look at the breakdown of the marriage market there, it really is such a mix, with no racial or ethnic group counts for more than half of the pool,” she says.