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Profiling the New Immigrant Worker: The Effects of Skin Color and Height


Joni Hersch


Vanderbilt University - Law School; Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management; Vanderbilt University - College of Arts and Science - Department of Economics

April 15, 2008

Journal of Labor Economics, Forthcoming
Vanderbilt Law and Economics Research Paper No. 07-02

Abstract:     
Using data from the New Immigrant Survey 2003, this paper shows that skin color and height affect wages among new lawful immigrants to the U.S. controlling for education, English language proficiency, occupation in source country, family background, ethnicity, race, and country of birth. Immigrants with the lightest skin color earn on average 17 percent more than comparable immigrants with the darkest skin color. Taller immigrants have higher wages, but weight does not affect wages. Controls for extensive current labor market characteristics that may be influenced by discrimination do not eliminate the negative effect of darker skin color on wages.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 60

Keywords: discrimination, immigrants, skin color

JEL Classification: J10, J71, J31, K31

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Date posted: August 29, 2006 ; Last revised: January 14, 2011

Suggested Citation

Hersch, Joni, Profiling the New Immigrant Worker: The Effects of Skin Color and Height (April 15, 2008). Journal of Labor Economics, Forthcoming; Vanderbilt Law and Economics Research Paper No. 07-02. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=927038 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.927038

Contact Information

Joni Hersch (Contact Author)
Vanderbilt University - Law School ( email )
131 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203-1181
United States
615-343-7717 (Phone)
615-322-6631 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://law.vanderbilt.edu/go/phdlawecon
Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management
401 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203
United States
Vanderbilt University - College of Arts and Science - Department of Economics
Box 1819 Station B
Nashville, TN 37235
United States
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