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Utah High On List for International Marriages

flickr.com, daveynin

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Census data shows Utah has the fifth-highest rate of marriages between U.S.-born and foreign-born people. The Salt Lake Tribune reports  that Utah ranks behind only Hawaii, Nevada, California and Florida. Census figures show the state has 34,000 of these types of married couples — 10.5 percent of all marriages.

That’s well above the national average of 7.4 percent. University of Utah economist Pam Perlich says the state’s large group of long-settled Latinos may explain the ranking with new immigrants marrying second- and third-generation immigrants. Perlich says the prevalence of returned Mormon missionaries may also be a factor.

Missionaries may be more likely to marry foreign-born spouses because of their familiarity with foreign languages and cultures. The Census data shows that 55 percent of foreign-born spouses nationally are women.

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