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Studies of adolescents and young adults have shown that schooling impacts economic outcomes beyond its impact on cognitive ability. Research has also shown that the personality trait of conscientiousness predicts health outcomes, academic outcomes, and divorce. Using the Big Five taxonomy of personality traits, this paper examines whether non-cognitive traits are related to economic success over the life course. Examining Health and Retirement Study survey data linked to Social Security records on over 10,000 adults age 50 and over, the authors investigate the relationship of personality traits to economic outcomes.
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