Conjugal appetite is declining, the world over. Marriage rates are falling. By 2020, the population will welcome 48 million solo residents.
Singletons are the fastest-growing household group in most parts of the world.
The trend is most marked in the rich West, where it has been apparent for some time. 50 percent of America’s adults, for instance, are unmarried, up from 22 percent in 1950. And nearly 15 percent live by themselves, up from 4 percent.
“Singleton” is a modern, gender-neutral term for a bachelor or a spinster, which means anyone who isn’t married. But it can be a confusing term because it lumps all unmarried folks in one basket.
There are those who’re single, but don’t live alone. They may live either with their family or share an apartment with a roommate. Then there are those who live alone, but they still may not be leading a solitary existence. They may spend a lot of time hanging out with friends and neighbors. And then there are the true loners—individuals who don’t enjoy the company of others.
Singledom is on the rise in emerging economies as well.
Even in Islamic Iran, some women are choosing education over marriage, exploiting newly relaxed divorce laws or flashing fake wedding rings to secure sole lodgings.
In Brazil, the lifestyle is changing consumption patterns.
The annual sales of ready-made meals—much favored by lone-rangers—have more than doubled in the last five years, to $1.2 billion; sales of soups have tripled.
h/t: THE ECONOMIST