The finding that left-handers make less money is an exception to the rule for special figures such as Paul McCartney, David Cameron or Barack Obama. But overall, research shows that left-handers earn 12% less than right-handers.
A study looking at 47,000 British and American people shows that left-handers are at a significant disadvantage in the workplace. This conclusion seems to dispel the myth that left-handers are more talented than their colleagues. Statistics show that one in eight people prefer using their left hand to their right. Professor Joshua Goodman, an economist at Harvard University, said those who write with their left hand have a number of disadvantages.
He wrote in the Journal of Economic Perspectives: “Left-handers are economically and statistically more likely to have a human capital deficit than right-handers. In addition, left-handers consistently have lower cognitive abilities and higher mental and physical abilities. Rates of behavioral disorders. Our study is the first to show that left-handers consistently have lower labor market earnings than right-handers. This holds true even after accounting for infant health and the family background of the study subjects.”
Goodman said people had always viewed left-handers with suspicion, but then a popular belief emerged that left-handers were more talented. This is also supported by anecdotal evidence, such as the fact that 4 of the past 7 US presidents were left-handed. In fact, these anecdotes prove nothing.
The reason for the disparity in earnings between left-handers and right-handers is unclear, but the economist noted that left-handers may have deficits in basic cognitive abilities. The data shows that 3% of left-handed children are more likely to have the worst test scores than right-handed children. Additionally, they are more likely to have a learning disability or dyslexia.