There are three reasons divorce rates decline in a recession. The first is that, for dualincome households, marriage is a form of unemployment insurance: if one partner loses a job, the other can offer financial support. That insurance only pays, however, if the partner who is still employed doesn’t choose to leave the marriage. The reality of recessions is that far more people worry about job loss than actually become unemployed. And no one wants to cancel their unemployment insurance when they fear being out of work. As a result, when unemployment increases, divorce rates fall.The second reason why divorce rates may have fallen has to do with the housing market. Couples prefer to stay in less-than-satisfy ing marriages over losing the equity they have built up in their homes. A recent academic paper found that a 10% decrease in house prices is associated with a 29% drop in divorce rates among college educated couples.