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Marriage success not defined by wedding expense

Image: Skley/Foter/CC BY-ND

It is not how much you spend. Image: Skley/Foter/CC BY-ND

[by Dean Smith] A study by two economic professors, Hugo Mialon and Andrew Francis, from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia discovered there is an inverse relationship between how much was spent on a wedding and the success of the marriage.

One would typically think the more you spent on the wedding the longer a marriage would last. In fact, the opposite is the case.

According to an article on CNN, they found divorce rates for weddings costing over $20,000 were 1.6 times higher than for weddings ranging between $5,000 and $10,000. Weddings costing less than a $1,000 were also more successful than the average marriage.

They noticed a similar correlation between the cost of the engagement ring and marriage success.

The authors based their conclusions on a survey of 3,151 American adults who were either married or divorced.

In an interview with CNN, Francis said their study flies contrary to the messaging of the wedding industry that says expensive weddings reflect a higher commitment to a marriage and of course better success rates.

The duo suggested lower cost weddings may lower financial pressures in marriage, which is a major contributor to divorce.

A survey conducted by the wedding website,, found the average cost for a wedding in America in 2013 was nearly $30,000.

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