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CEE/Education and skills discussion paper
Accounting for Intergenerational Income Persistence: Non-Cognitive Skills, Ability and Education
Jo Blanden, Paul Gregg, Lindsey Macmillan and Lindsey Macmillan September 2006
Paper No' CEEDP0073:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: J62; J13; J31

Tags: intergenerational mobility; children; skills

We analyse in detail the factors that lead to intergenerational persistence among sons, where this is measured as the association between childhood family income and later adult earnings. We seek to account for the level of income persistence in the 1970 BCS cohort and also to explore the decline in mobility in the UK between the 1958 NCDS cohort and the 1970 cohort. The mediating factors considered are cognitive skills, noncognitive traits, educational attainment and labour market attachment. Changes in the relationships between these variables, parental income and earnings are able to explain over 80% of the rise in intergenerational persistence across the cohorts.