Colorism Against Legal Immigrants to the United States
American Behavioral Scientist, Forthcoming
24 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2018
Date Written: July 13, 2018
Data from the 2003 wave of the New Immigrant Survey established that immigrants to the US with darker skin color experienced a substantial pay penalty that is not explained by extensive individual and job characteristics. These same immigrants were re-interviewed approximately four years later. With additional time to assimilate to the US labor market, the disadvantage of darker skin color may have declined or even disappeared. The current analysis shows that the penalty for darker color instead increased over this period from a 16 percent lightest-to-darkest penalty for a 25 percent disparity.
Keywords: colorism, immigrant, light skin, dark skin
JEL Classification: J15, J61, J71, K38
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