Legalizing same-sex marriage is good business

Analysts and government experts expect long and short-term economic benefits from June's Supreme Court rulings.

By Bruce Kennedy Jun 26, 2013 4:49PM

A couple celebrates upon hearing the U.S. Supreme Court's rulings on DOMA/gay marriage in San Francisco, Calif., on Wednesday (© Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)The Supreme Court's ruling that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional could economically benefit most Americans, no matter their sexual orientation.

The short-term benefits are pretty obvious. The gay wedding market, for example, has grown significantly over the years, creating new business opportunities for hotels, resorts, caterers and photographers.

And in 2012, a year after New York legalized gay marriage, New York City announced same-sex marriages there had generated about $259 million, as well as an additional $16 million in city revenues.

Reuters notes that the decision will directly impact gays and lesbians already in state-sanctioned civil unions and marriages by offering federal recognition of those unions. It will also bring those couples "into a new and potentially lucrative world of shared tax, retirement, estate and employee benefits."

Or, as financial adviser and author Debra Neiman told the wire service, "it will be less costly to be gay."

Government reviewers and other observers say we should expect some long-term economic positives as well. A 2004 analysis by the Congressional Budget Office, for example, notes the legalization of same-sex marriage across the United States would bring a small but noticeable increase to federal tax revenues.

There's also the fact, as pointed out by Slate correspondent Matthew Yglesias, that married people in general do better economically than their unmarried counterparts.

Many big companies also see gay marriage as good business. Blogging on the PBS Newshour website, economist M.V. Lee Badgett noted that Google (GOOG), Apple (AAPL), Verizon Communications (VZ), Walt Disney (DIS), Viacom (VIA), Nike (NKE) and other corporations signed friend-of-the-court briefs regarding the Supreme Court's arguments on the Defense of Marriage Act and California's same-sex marriage ban -- also tossed out by the court on Wednesday.

"Those employers argued that they want to recruit and retain the most creative and productive workers to make their businesses competitive," Badgett wrote, "and that includes lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) workers. They want their LGBT employees to be able to focus on their jobs, not on dealing with the stigma and inequality that creates problems for their families."

More on moneyNOW

Jun 26, 2013 10:40PM
And then the divorce lawyers will make out (LOL)
Jun 26, 2013 8:00PM
Well, we were bound to see a story like this sooner or later..."Gay means 'green,' baby." No doubt the divorce lawyers are also salivating. Let's face it, gays and lesbians are human (the Supreme Court said so) and so why should their divorce rate be any different than that of may even be higher! "Ka-ching, baby!" Pre-nups, estate is a boon for lawyers and certain other related professions--of course, the party planners--as we all have drummed into our heads every year at 'Gay-Pride' Parades--they are a festive people!  
Jun 26, 2013 5:40PM
If you don't like gay marriage then don't get gay married
Jun 27, 2013 3:25AM

Morality lays the foundation for economics and when this foundation is compromised, it's only a matter of time before the entire house of cards falls.


No society has ever lasted for long when morals give way to economics or pressure from fringe groups.


God help us.

Sep 5, 2013 10:43AM
No matter what they do in this country, the bottom line is always money. Never mind what God's word says on the matter. I think they need to rethink "In God We Trust", because if they did put their trust in God they would not be behind gay marriage -- period. It's quite obvious that God is NOT in people's lives anymore. 
Jul 4, 2013 5:32PM
yep, good for the strap-on and K-Y jelly biz for sure.
Jun 27, 2013 7:55AM

Governments have no place in marriage and should not be issuing marriage certificates to anyone. The government’s roll should be only to issue a civil union certificate (a legal binding document) to all who seek one within the governments’ rules. All who are joined in a civil ceremony (of which marriage is one type) should be bound by all the same laws, the good and the bad that have traditionally been a part of a marriage.

No government has any right to dictate the meaning of the word marriage, married or matrimony. That right only should belong to religious organizations and they only, should have the right to decide who is married in there eyes, and the government has no right to control that decision.

No one should receive government spousal benefits unless they are in a legal and binding committed relationship. Corporations should be free to set there own rules beyond a civil union regarding extending benefits and should not be vilified because of those decisions.

Sep 5, 2013 2:52PM
Good Business?.. LMAO... With Obama's job record, we have turned to perversion for income!
Jun 26, 2013 6:34PM

Love conquers all...


Except conservatives it seems.

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