Nearly eight-in-ten never-married women place the highest importance on marrying someone who has a steady job.
A recent Pew Research poll found that single women and men who have never married are looking for “distinctly different qualities” in a potential spouse or partner. Primarily, nearly eight-in-ten of never-married women (78 percent) place the highest importance on finding someone who has a steady job (This criteria is important to less than half—46 percent—of men).
A follow-up Pew study released this week finds that many of these women may be at a disadvantage based simply on where they live. “There are pronounced differences in the ratio between men and women living in the largest U.S. metro areas, especially when it comes to singles who have an attractive characteristic: a job,” the report finds.
The Pew study explored the demographic of the “marriage market” based on what women said they most want in a spouse. Nationwide, the overall male-to-female ratio is 115:100 among Millenial adults ages 25-34. But the ratio falls to 84 single men for every 100 single women when employment is factored in.
Which of America’s largest metro areas give women the best odds of finding a male partner with a job? Topping the list is San Jose, Calif., with 114 single employed men for every 100 single women. Denver ranked second with the ratio of employed men to all women at 101: 100.
Rounding out the top 10 cities with the highest ratios of employed single young adults to single young women are:
- San-Diego-Carlsbad, CA (99 single and employed young men to 100 single young women)
- Minneapolis/St. Paul-Bloomington (98)
- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellvue, WA (96)
- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward (93)
- Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC (92)
- Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim (91)
- Pittsburgh, PA (90)
- Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL (90)
At the other end of the spectrum, women looking for men with a steady job may want to avoid these cities:
- Memphis, TN (59)
- Jacksonville (70)
- Detroit-Warren-Deerborn (71)
- Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia (73)
- Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington (74)
- Kansas City, MO (75)
- Nashville (77)
- Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach (78)
- New Orleans (78)
- Cincinnati (78)
Related story: What are the best big cities for jobs?
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.