Where Race Matters Most: Race, Ethnicity and Unemployment in 100 U.S. Metropolitan Areas

Amon Emeka, University of Southern California

We know that race and ethnicity are significant factors in U.S. labor markets; we also know that the extent of their influence varies from place to place, but the latter is often paid less attention. Taking a closer look at how much race and ethnicity matters from city to city may allow us to identify models and strategies for reducing the influence of race and ethnicity on patterns of unemployment in U.S. society. In this study, I use 2007 American Community Survey data to rank the 100 largest U.S. metropolitan areas on the basis of just how much race and ethnicity bear on patterns of unemployment and find that the concentration of Black population in metropolitan areas is associated with greater race and ethnicity effects on unemployment. Metropolitan area location in the south, racial and ethnic diversity, and unemployment rates seem not to influence the race/ethnicity effect. Additional metropolitan area characteristics are considered.

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Presented in Poster Session 6