Fewer children than ever are living in a household with two married parents, an ominous sign due to the strong link between parents' marital status and a child's likelihood of living in poverty. According to a recent study by the Pew Research Center, only 62 percent of children under 18 lived in a household with two married parents in 2014, a "historic low." Twenty-six percent of children under 18 were living with only one parent, while 7 percent lived with two unmarried, cohabiting parents.
However, Pew noted that "the economic outcomes for these different types of families vary dramatically." In 2014, 31 percent of single-parent households and 21 percent of two cohabiting parent households were living below the poverty line. By comparison, only one in 10 children with two married parents were living in a similar economic situation; 57 percent, in fact, lived with parents whose incomes were at least 200 percent above the poverty line.
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