Over a million refugees and other immigrants arrived in the United States from Southeast Asia starting in 1975. Forty-five years later, their adult children have completed their education in the U.S. and entered the labor force. This study uses a large microdata sample from the American Community Survey to describe and compare the socioeconomic status of Southeast Asian American adults and native-born white adults. Results are disaggregated by gender, generation (Generation 1.5 and Generation 2), and ethnic group (Hmong, other Laotian, Cambodian, and Vietnamese). Regression analysis – controlling for age, educational attainment, and other factors – shows that native-born white men generally have higher predicted median hourly wages and earnings and higher labor force participation rates than Southeast Asian men, although Vietnamese men surpass white men in some measures. On the other hand, Southeast Asian women’s predicted median wages, earnings, and labor force participation rates exceed those of native-born white women.
"Socioeconomic Status of Second-Generation Southeast Asians: New Evidence and Analysis,"
Journal of Southeast Asian American Education and Advancement: Vol. 16
Available at: https://docs.lib.purdue.edu/jsaaea/vol16/iss1/15