DailyMail 25 October 2013
Married couples enjoy far greater wealth and health than those who cohabit, an influential think-tank revealed yesterday.
They are more likely to own their home, have better jobs and be more highly educated – and less likely to struggle to pay the bills.
They have less chance of splitting up and their children are less likely to smoke or take drugs, a report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies said.
One piece of research showed that married parents of a three-year-old were twice as likely as cohabiting couples to be in the wealthiest fifth of families. They were half as likely to be in the poorest fifth.
Married fathers were more than twice as likely as cohabiting fathers to have a professional occupation and in the sample studied 86 per cent of married couples were homeowners compared with 54 per cent of cohabitees.
The study found that teenagers whose parents cohabit were 10 per cent more likely to smoke or use cannabis by the age of 16 than children from married families.
The IFS admitted that no reason for the difference could be detected and that one explanation may be the positive effect on youngsters of being brought up by parents who are married.