The national snapshot of census data showed that in the USA, 17 percent of newlyweds had a spouse of a different race, a five-fold increase since 1967, when 3 percent of newlyweds were intermarried, the report said.
The study, which was based on U.S. Census data covering the four-year span between 2011 and 2015, shines a light on the rapidly increasing national trend of Americans marrying outside their own race.
White intermarriage has risen to 11 percent from 4 percent over the same period, but whites are the least likely among racial or ethnic groups to intermarry, the report said. "But I think that a greater reason is the growing diversity of the population". In Honolulu, the "marriage market" of unmarried and recently married adults in Honolulu comprises 42 percent Asians, 20 percent non-Hispanic whites, and 9 percent Hispanics.
The most dramatic increase in intermarriage has occurred among black newlyweds. The rate for black newlyweds has more than tripled since 1980 - from 5 percent to 18 percent.
Interracial marriage became legal throughout the United States in 1967 when Richard and Mildred Loving took their case to the U.S. Supreme Court. For white newlyweds, the rate has nearly tripped from 4 percent to 11 percent over the same period. The Lovings were thrown into a Virginia jail in 1958 for violating the state's ban on interracial marriage.
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But among Asian newlyweds, those with some college experience (39 percent) are more likely to marry someone of a different race or ethnicity than those with a bachelor's degree or higher (29 percent) or with a high school diploma or less (26 percent). The Supreme Court struck down the Virginia law and those in roughly one-third of the states in 1967.
The next most common pairing is one white and one Asian spouse (15 percent).
The number of new marriages across racial or ethnic lines varies widely across US metropolitan areas.
Intermarriage is most common among newlyweds in their 30s (18 percent). In Denver, 14 percent of whites married someone of a different race, compared with 36 percent of Hispanics. "Asian newlyweds with some college are somewhat less likely to be immigrants, and this may contribute to the higher rates of intermarriage for this group", the Pew report suggests. Those rates go up even higher for those born in the USA - to 46 percent for Asian newlyweds and 39 percent for Hispanic newlyweds. Blacks and whites were intermarried at 18% and 11%, respectively. For Republicans and GOP-leaning independents, less than 1 in 3 - or 28 percent- saw marriages between races and ethnicities as a good thing for society.