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Ethnic unemployment rates and frictional markets

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  • Gobillon, Laurent
  • Rupert, Peter
  • Wasmer, Etienne

Abstract

The unemployment rate in France is roughly 6 percentage points higher for African immigrants than for natives. In the US the unemployment rate is approximately 9 percentage points higher for blacks than for whites. Commute time data indicates that minorities face longer commute times to work, potentially reflecting more difficult access to jobs. In this paper we investigate the impact of spatial mismatch on the unemployment rate of ethnic groups using the matching model proposed by Rupert and Wasmer (2012). We find that spatial factors explain 1–1.5 percentage points of the unemployment rate gap in both France and the US, amounting to 17–25% of the relative gap in France and about 10–17.5% in the US. Among these factors, differences in commuting distance play the most important role. In France, though, longer commuting distances may be mitigated by higher mobility in the housing market for African workers. Overall, we still conclude that labor market factors remain the main explanation for the higher unemployment rate of Africans.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 79 (2014)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 108-120

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Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:79:y:2014:i:c:p:108-120

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622905

Related research

Keywords: Local markets; Matching model; Ethnic groups; Discrimination; Spatial Mismatch;

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As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Ethnic ghettos and unemployment
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2013-08-23 14:52:00
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Cited by:
  1. David Neumark & Helen Simpson, 2014. "Place-Based Policies," NBER Working Papers 20049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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