Children with wealthy friends are more likely to have high wages as adults

According to a study published in the journal Nature, children from low-income families who can make friends from high-income families are more likely to achieve high-tech in adulthood than those with few similar friends. An individual’s social capital, social networks and the community in which they live are thought to have a considerable impact on escaping poverty. To test this conjecture, the researchers analyzed anonymized Facebook data from 72.2 million Americans aged 25-44, which is representative of 84 percent of the nation’s population in this age group. The research team used machine learning algorithms to identify data such as a person’s socioeconomic status, the median income of residents living in the same area. They found that the median household income was about $58,000. The researchers then split the analysis into two groups, one below the median and one above the median. If the friends were made at random, the two groups should be divided equally. But the analysis showed that people with a low median were more likely to have friends with a low median, while those with a high median were more likely to have friends with a high median (a whopping 70.6 percent).

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