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Public approval of interracial marriage rose from around 5% in the 1950s to around 80% in the 2000s.
The proportion of interracial marriages is markedly different depending on the ethnicity and gender of the spouses.
The table shows that among whites who out-married in 2008, there were different patterns by gender in the race of their spouses.
More than a quarter of white men (26.9%) married an Asian woman, and about 6.9% married a black woman.
Research at the universities of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and Texas A&M addressing the topic of socio-economic status, among other factors, showed that none of the socio-economic status variables appeared to be positively related to outmarriage within the Asian American community, and found lower-socioeconomically stable Asians sometimes utilized outmarriage to whites as a means to advance social status.
The study also observed a clear gender divide in racial preference with regards to marriage: Women of all the races which were studied revealed a strong preference for men of their own race for marriage, with the caveat that East Asian women only discriminated against Black and Hispanic men, and not against White men.
Several studies have found that a factor which significantly affects an individual's choices with regards to marriage is socio-economic status ("SES")—the measure of a person's income, education, social class, profession, etc.
Gurung & Duong (1999) compiled a study relating to mixed-ethnic relationships ("MER"s) and same-ethnic relationships ("SER"s), concluding that individuals part of "MER"s generally do not view themselves differently from same-ethnic couples.
In Social Trends in America and Strategic Approaches to the Negro Problem (1948), Swedish economist Gunnar Myrdal ranked the social areas where restrictions were imposed on the freedom of Black Americans by Southern White Americans through racial segregation, from the least to the most important: basic public facility access, social equality, jobs, courts and police, politics and marriage.