How can that be? Everyone knows the divorce rate is down. Once boomers dumped spouse number one and settled down with spouse number two, divorce moved off their bucket list.
Not so, according to demographers Sheela Kennedy and Steven Ruggles. In their research paper, "Breaking Up Is Hard to Count: The Rise of Divorce in the United States, 1980-2010" (Demography, April 2014, $39.95), the researchers blame a "deterioration of the statistical system" for the "uncertainty about trends in union instability over the past three decades." Their analysis shows that rather than declining, the divorce rate in 2011 was at a record high.
More from the Demo Memo.