This paper focuses on the potential trade-offs that may exist between anthropometric and socioeconomic characteristics of spouses in Germany. Specifically the question is whether men, women or both face a penalty in terms of their spouse’s characteristics when their own anthropometric characteristics are not desirable from a physical attractiveness point of view. The results indicate that having higher body mass index (being less attractive) is penalised in terms of husbands’ income for women and in terms of wives’ health for men among recently married couples, but no such penalisation is observed when it is their first marriage. The results in terms of weight are consistent with those for body mass index. Height is rewarded in terms of wives’ health for men and of husbands’ income and education for women.
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