Does Latino Population Induce White Flight? Evidence from Los Angeles County

Ying Pan, Louisiana State University

Whether local minority population induces white flight to suburbs or private schools is a question of interest to many researchers. However, empirically identifying the causality is difficult due to residential sorting. Relying on a residential sorting model, I assume that similar people live in the same neighborhood. I identify the effect of local Latino population on white flight by using the cohort-to-cohort change in the race composition within each neighborhood, which is a credibly idiosyncratic variation. Using Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey, I find that for every 10 percentage points increase in the share of Latinos in a white child’s cohort and neighborhood, she is more likely to attend private school by 3 percentage points, or her household is more likely to move to a less Latino neighborhood in the next two years by 6-8 percentage points.

Presented in Session 164: Racial/Ethnic Segregation and Discrimination