Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 587–601 | Cite as

Changes in the earnings of Arab men in the US between 2000 and 2002

  • Alberto Dávila
  • Marie T. Mora
Original Paper


Using public-use microdata samples from the American Community Survey, we find that Middle Eastern Arab men and Afghan, Iranian, and Pakistani men experienced a significant earnings decline relative to non-Hispanic whites between 2000 and 2002. Further analyses based on the Juhn–Murphy–Pierce wage decomposition technique as well as quantile regression indicate that this earnings decline is not explained by changes in the structure of wages or in observable characteristics beyond ethnicity. Our interpretation is that the unanticipated events of September 11th, 2001 negatively affected the labor-market income of the groups most closely associated with the ethnicity of the terrorists.


Arab Americans September 11th discrimination 

JEL Classification

J71 J31 J23 


  1. American–Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (2003) Report on hate crimes and discrimination against Arab Americans: the post September 11 backlash, September 11, 2001–October 11, 2002. In: H. Ibish (ed). ADCRI, Washington.
  2. Becker GS (1971) The economics of discrimination. University of Chicago Press, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  3. Blau FD, Kahn L (1994) Rising wage inequality and the US gender gap. Am Econ Rev AEA Pap Proc 84(2):23–28Google Scholar
  4. Blau FD, Kahn L (1997) Swimming upstream: trends in the gender wage differential in the 1980s. J Labor Econ 15(1):1–42CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Card D (1990) Impact of the Mariel boatlift on the Miami labor market. Ind Labor Relat Rev 43(2):245–257CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Human Rights Watch (2002) We are not the enemy: hate crimes against Arabs, Muslims, and those perceived to be Arab or Muslim after September 11. US 14(6):1–41. Available at
  7. Juhn C, Murphy KM, Pierce B (1993) Wage inequality and the rise in the returns to skill. J Polit Econ 101(3):410–42CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Kennedy P (1981) Estimations with correctly interpreted dummy variables in semilogarithmic equations. Am Econ Rev 71(4):801Google Scholar
  9. Koenker R, Hallock KF (2001) Quantile regression. J Econ Perspect 15(4):143–156CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Marshall R (1973) The economics of racial discrimination: an overview. J Econ Lit 12(3):849–71Google Scholar
  11. Phelps E (1972) A statistical theory of racism and sexism. Am Econ Rev 62(4):659–61Google Scholar
  12. Stiglitz JE (1973) Approaches to the economics of discrimination. Am Econ Rev AEA Pap Proc 63(2):287–95Google Scholar
  13. US Bureau of the Census (2003) The Arab population: 2000 (Census 2000 Brief), C2KBR-23, issued December 2003. US Government Printing Office, Washington D.C.Google Scholar
  14. US Bureau of the Census (2004) American Community Survey 2000–2003: public-use microdata. Data downloaded from on August 30, 2004 (webpage last revised on August 25, 2004)

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Economics and Finance, College of Business AdministrationUniversity of TexasEdinburgUSA

Personalised recommendations