Money, Honey if You Want to Get Along With Me: Money Management and Union Dissolution in Marriage and Cohabitation

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Most U.S. analyses of household resource allocation ignore what couples do with their money—whether it is combined in a "common pot" or kept separate. However, there is good reason to believe that a better understanding of couples' money practices offers new insight into other family behaviors. This study uses Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study data (N = 1,448 couples) to analyze the association of couples' money management with subsequent union dissolution. Results show a strong association between moving money out of joint accounts, and consistently keeping money separate, and couple breakup. This association holds for married, but not for cohabiting couples.
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