NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Mingshan Lu

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Working Papers

December 2005Psychiatric Disorders and Labor Market Outcomes: Evidence from the National Latino and Asian American Study
with Pinka Chatterji, Margarita Alegria, David Takeuchi: w11893
This paper investigates to what extent psychiatric disorders and mental distress affect labor market outcomes among ethnic minorities of Latino and Asian descent, most of whom are immigrants. Using data from the National Latino and Asian American Study, we examine the labor market effects of meeting diagnostic criteria for any psychiatric disorder in the past 12 months as well as the effects of psychiatric distress in the past year. Among Latinos, psychiatric disorders and mental distress are associated with detrimental effects on employment and absenteeism, similar to effects found in previous analyses of mostly white, American born populations. Among Asians, we find mixed evidence that psychiatric disorders and mental distress detract from labor market outcomes.

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