Smarter women—or at least those who test well—get paid more to donate eggs. "Holding all else equal, an increase of 100 SAT points in the score of a typical incoming student increased the compensation offered to oocyte donors at that college or university by $2,350," according to a new report that confirms copious anecdotal evidence. The Georgia Tech looked at 103 ads in 63 student newspapers to reach his conclusion.
Some ethicists fret over the commodification of donor eggs, but the process is unregulated, and some would-be parents are willing to pay a premium for, say, a high GPA or particular eye color. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine says it would like to keep compensation below $10,000. The average is $4,200, but some donors receive as much as $35,000. Some prospective parents “feel if they don’t go to a Mercedes dealership, they’re buying something less,” a worried donation agency founder tells the Boston Globe.