Beauty and the Repeat

It's deja vu all over again. Three years ago, the FC team blogged about a report by Hal Varian that indicates that good-looking people often have better-paying jobs.

According to this morning's New York Times — and a new report by Varian — it's... still... true.

While my first reaction was to perhaps accuse Varian of trotting out the trite and true, he does consider some new research done by economists at Harvard and Wesleyan. Why Beauty Matters was published in the March issue of American Economic Review.

The short form?

  • The beautiful are no better at solving mazes than the average looking.
  • Beautiful people are more confident about their abilities.
  • People tend to think beautiful people are more productive — even when they aren't.
  • Beautiful people come across as confident on the phone as well as in person.
  • Good-looking people tend to be good communicators.
  • When the beautiful fail, folks feel let down because expectations are higher.

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