Just as with honest jobs, mobsters with a more advanced education made more money than their less educated counterparts. Erika Beras reports.
Turns out, education pays off. That’s true whether you’re a doctor or a lawyer—or even a mobster, according to a new study.
Researchers compared the FBI files of more than seven hundred Italian-American mafia men from the '30’s to the '40’s to other nonmob men from the 1940 census—some were neighbors, others were first and second generation Italian-American immigrants and some were U.S. born white men.
They found that mobsters tended to have a year less schooling than their neighbors—but for those who stayed in school a little longer, they tended to do better economically. More education increased their income—or moolah—by about 8 percent, on average.
The Study is the Economics of Education Review. [Nadia Campaniello et al., Returns to Education in Criminal Organizations: Did Going to College Help Michael Corleone]
Of course, this shouldn’t be surprising. The mafia is essentially a corporation, involving complex organizational and numerical expertise. Weighing grams and running numbers takes more than basic math skills. And researchers found the mobsters with the highest return were the ones involved with more complicated schemes—think embezzling, racketeering and loan sharking. Their profit was about three times higher than the mobsters involved with criminal activity like robberies.
So study up! No matter what you plan to do, seems like the more you study, the bigger the payoff. Even if you ain’t nothing but a wiseguy.
[The above text is a transcript of this podcast.]