What Would You Name Your Baby? You Lose $3,600 Per Year For Every Extra Letter In Your Name

May 7, 2013  |  

New research from online job-matching service TheLadders found that there’s a link between the length of a person’s name and how much they’re paid. The more letters in your name, the lower your salary, to the tune of $3,600 annually for each additional letter. So, for instance, a “Bill” makes more than a “William” and a “Debbie” more than “Deborah.” The company, which took a look at the names, industries, and salaries for its six million members, even noticed a difference between “Michele” and “Michelle.”

The one name that’s doing well, turning up prominently on lists of executives and those with the highest pay, is “Christine.” Women, across the board, however, make much less than men.

Names are a heavy topic for African Americans, with studies finding time and again that resumes with a name that “sounds” too ethic have a problem getting to the interview stage. This a topic we tackled just today over on MommyNoire, with many commenters saying they will be cautious not to choose a name that would “put their child in a box” or “sound too ghetto.” As if this ongoing debate about race and name choice isn’t enough, The Boston Globe, published a big story about how name choices reflect society’s tastes and behaviors. For instance, back when Puritans were building the colonies, names like “Abstinence” were big.

“Economists Roland G. Fryer Jr. and Steven D. Levitt used data from a California state agency in 2004 to ask why black parents in racially isolated neighborhoods began giving their children “distinctively black names,” like DeShawn or Shanice, in the late 1960s and early 1970s, while other black parents’ name choices became more similar to whites’. Fryer and Levitt write that the ‘ghettoization’ of black names is likely a consequence of the black pride movement’s influence on black identity.”

So what names do you favor and why? Are you taking a future career into account when choosing a baby name?

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