It's that discrepancy that accounts for the greater number of postings by parents seeking husbands for their daughters.
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According to the latest census data, there are 105 men for every 100 women in the country.
By 2020, the Chinese State Population and Family Planning Commission estimates that there will be 30 million men of marrying age that won't have a partner.
The booming marriage market has even sparked a cottage industry of agents, who offer to save parents a day in the hot sun by posting notices on their behalf. Gu said he makes around 4,000 Yuan (about $630) per month from displaying laminated advertisements in a heavily trafficked area of the park.
Some of these brokers charge a premium for access to a phone directory-like notebook with the contact information of unmarried locals. Each parent pays a fee of 100 Yuan (about $16) for a six-month posting on his board.
In Chinese popular culture, these urban, unmarried women over a certain age — usually 27, but it varies by location — are given an unflattering nickname: , or "leftover women." According to 2010 census figures cited in a report published by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, 50% of unmarried women between the ages of 25 and 29 lived in cities, compared to 46% of unmarried men in the same age group.
And that divide widens dramatically with age; 54% of unmarried women between the ages of 40 and 45 lived in cities, compared to 21% of unmarried men in the same age range.
But these seniors weren't waiting to take a tai chi class or to make small talk over chess.
They were sweating it out in the midsummer heat with a singular, all-important mission: finding a spouse for their adult offspring.
With the help of a family connection, her mother even posted Hu's personal information on the internal discussion board of a prestigious e-commerce company.
Hu said she got more than 20 dating inquiries that evening, but nothing promising came of them."I had nothing in common with these men who work in IT," Hu told Refinery29.
"I'd try to break the ice and talk about my work, but they haven't the slightest idea who Tommy Hilfiger or Ralph Lauren is."For Dani Zhang, a 32-year-old civil servant, the pressure has come to a tipping point.