No one was more surprised than I when my German publisher announced that the title of that version of my book would be Warum man weniger lernen sollte, um mehr Sex zu haben, which, translated into English, is the title of this post. Apparently, if you are German this title is amusing – as evidenced by the two little books doing it “doggy style” on the cover – but I have to admit that it is not a topic that I have ever explored, until today.
We have this perception that most cheating that goes on in marriage is among the extremely wealthy. Well, of course we do. When a man in the bottom of the income distribution discovers that the child he is raising is not his own, it doesn’t exactly make the evening news. Rationally we all know this, but the perception that cheating is positively correlated with income is fairly pervasive. So, are we correct in thinking that infidelity is a luxury good consumed by the very wealthy?
The dating website eHarmony had a free weekend last week, or so I was told by a friend who was presumably trying to be helpful. Economists find dating websites extremely useful, not to find the love of their lives (although they might be doing that) but because they provide an opportunity to observe a fascinating market in action: the market for marriage. From this market we can determine what individual preferences are for a mate, and this can be extremely useful in economic analysis.