A government-funded study has shown that children scoring in the top 15% for maths skills tend to make more money as adults.

According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), children who display the most advanced mathematical talents typically earn the most money compared to those that show a weakness in the same subject. 

The study which was underwritten by the Department for Education, examined the achievements in maths of subjects born in 1970 and their respective salaries at the age of 30. Scoring in the top 15% in maths at the age of 10 may indicate a 7.3% income boost in adulthood over those kids that achieved middle-ranking scores. The additional income was calculated to be about £2,100 extra annually.

Claire Crawford, programme director of the skills sector at the IFS, said "maths skills developed during primary school continue to matter for earnings 20-30 years down the line.”

The research also shows that numerical ability may be more important than reading skills in the long haul. Those students in the top 15% for reading at the age of 10 only added approximately 1.9% or £550 annually at the age of 30. 

These findings highlight the importance of emphasising math skills more prominently in children’s earlier years.

In the report on the study, researchers found that although reading skills lead to an extra financial edge in the jobs market, employers tend to favour those with greater mathematical abilities. Employers "seem to value maths skills more highly and are willing to reward them with higher wages, indicating that there may be a shortage of such skills.”