Interfirm Segregation and the Black/White Wage Gap
This paper studies interfirm racial segregation in two newly developed firm-level databases. Within the representative MSA, we find that the interfirm distribution of black and white workers is close to what would be implied by the random assignment of workers to firms. However, we also find that black workers are systematically clustered in "black" employers where managers, owners, and customers are also black. These facts may be reconciled by the facts that a) there are not enough black employers to generate much segregation and that b) perhaps other difficult-to-identify forces serve to systematically integrate black and white workers. Finally, we find that the black/white wage gap is entirely a within-firm phenomenon, as blacks do not work in firms that pay low wages on average.
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