Marital sorting on education is an important but poorly understood source of inequality. This paper analyzes a group of men and women who do not meet their spouses in school, are not sorted by education in the workplace, and whose earnings are not correlated with their years of education. Nevertheless, movie actors marry spouses with an education similar to their own. These findings suggest that male and female preferences alone induce considerable sorting on education in marriage and that men and women have very strong preferences for nonfinancial partner traits correlated with years of education.
US middle aged men and women are earning in the order of 30 percent of their return to schooling through improved marital outcomes.