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Can Boosting Minority Car-Ownership Rates Narrow Inter-Racial Employment Gaps

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  • Steven Raphael
  • Michael A. Stoll

Abstract

In this paper, we assess whether boosting minority car-ownership rates would narrow inter-racial employment rate differentials. We pursue two empirical strategies. First, we explore whether the effect of auto ownership on the probability of being employed is greater for more segregated groups of workers. Exploiting the fact that African Americans are considerably more segregated from whites than are Latinos, we estimate car-employment effects for blacks, Latinos, and whites and test whether these effects are largest for more segregated groups. Second, we use data at the level of the metropolitan area to test whether the car-employment effect for blacks relative to that for whites increases with the degree of black relative isolation from employment opportunities. We find the strongest car effects for blacks, followed by Latinos, and then whites. Moreover, this ordering is statistically significant. We also find that the relative car-employment effect for blacks is largest in metropolitan areas where the relative isolation of blacks from employment opportunities is the most severe. Our empirical estimates indicate that raising minority car-ownership rates to the white car ownership rate would eliminate 45 percent of the black-white employment rate differential and 17 percent of the comparable Latino-white differential.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research in its series JCPR Working Papers with number 200.

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Date of creation: 26 Jul 2000
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Handle: RePEc:wop:jopovw:200

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  1. Ayres, Ian & Siegelman, Peter, 1995. "Race and Gender Discrimination in Bargaining for a New Car," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 304-21, June.
  2. M. A. Stoll & H. J. Holzer & K. R. Ihlanfeldt, . "Within Cities and Suburbs: Racial Residential Concentration and the Spatial Distribution of Employment Opportunities across Submetropolitan Areas," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1189-99, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  3. Cutler, David & Vigdor, Jacob & Glaeser, Edward, 1999. "The Rise and Decline of the American Ghetto," Scholarly Articles 2770033, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1996. "Dealer Price Discrimination in New Car Purchases: Evidence from the Consumer Expenditure Survey," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(3), pages 622-54, June.
  5. Harry Holzer & John Quigley & Steve Raphael, 2001. "Public transit and spatial distribution of minority employment: evidence from a natural experiment," Proceedings 909, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  6. H. J. Holzer & K. R. Ihlanfeldt, . "Spatial factors and the employment of blacks at the firm level," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1086-96, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  7. Ihlanfeldt, Keith R & Young, Madelyn V, 1996. "The Spatial Distribution of Black Employment between the Central City and the Suburbs," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(4), pages 693-707, October.
  8. Leslie E. Papke, 1993. "What Do We Know about Enterprise Zones?," NBER Chapters, in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 7, pages 37-72 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn & Jordan Rappaport, 2000. "Why Do The Poor Live In Cities?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1891, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  10. Stoll, Michael A., 1999. "Spatial Job Search, Spatial Mismatch, and the Employment and Wages of Racial and Ethnic Groups in Los Angeles," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 129-155, July.
  11. Raphael, Steven & Rice, Lorien, 2002. "Car ownership, employment, and earnings," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 109-130, July.
  12. Holzer Harry J. & Ihlanfeldt Keith R. & Sjoquist David L., 1994. "Work, Search, and Travel among White and Black Youth," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 320-345, May.
  13. O'Regan, Katherine M. & Quigley, John M., 1999. "Spacial Isolation and Welfare Recipients: What Do We Know?," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt1mz642ft, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
  14. Weinberg, Bruce A., 2000. "Black Residential Centralization and the Spatial Mismatch Hypothesis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 110-134, July.
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