A recent publication by the Chicago Fed looks at skill gaps in numeracy, literacy, problem-solving, and non-cognitive skills and their relation to income mobility. Perhaps surprisingly (perhaps not), the author found
that inequality in an index of “non-cognitive skills” explains as much or more of the variation in intergenerational mobility than inequality in traditional measures of cognitive skills such as numeracy, literacy, and problem solving. An emerging line of research has argued that personality traits such as perseverance and grit play an important role in socioeconomic success. These results are consistent with the idea that the large gaps in skills in the U.S. population are part of what is driving both higher inequality and lower intergenerational mobility.
Check it out.