NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Language, Employment and Earnings in the United States: Spanish-English Differentials from 1970 to 1990

David E. Bloom, Gilles Grenier

NBER Working Paper No. 4584
Issued in December 1993
NBER Program(s):   LS

This paper analyzes employment and earnings differentials between Spanish speakers and English speakers in the United States, using data from the 1970, 1980, and 1990 U.S. censuses. The results show that Spanish speakers, both men and women, do not perform as well in the labor market as English speakers. The results also reveal that Spanish-English earnings and unemployment differentials increased slightly in the 1970s, most likely because of rapid growth in the number of Spanish speakers. By contrast, these differentials increased sharply in the 1980s, also a period of rapidly increasing supply. However, there is no evidence that the widening of differentials in the 1980s reflects an increase in the labor market rewards to English language proficiency. Rather, they appear to be the result of Spanish speakers having relatively little of those labor market characteristics, most notably education, whose market value increased dramatically during the 1980s.

download in pdf format
   (274 K)

email paper

This paper is available as PDF (274 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w4584

Published: Bloom, David E. and Gilles Grenier. "Language, Employment, and Earnings in the United States: Spanish-English Differentials from 1970 to 1990." International Journal of the Sociology of Language (Special Issue on the Economics of Language) 121 (1996): 45–68.

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Carliner w5763 The Wages and Language Skills of U.S. Immigrants
Lewis w17609 Immigrant-Native Substitutability: The Role of Language Ability
Angrist, Chin, and Godoy w12005 Is Spanish-Only Schooling Responsible for the Puerto Rican Language Gap?
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us