The Park Place Economist


While it is evident that the recession has affected a diversity of people in different ways of life, there is a unique connection between industries and ethnic groups. “Many of the demographic groups that exhibit larger cyclical variation such as those with lower education, minorities, and males, are more likely to be employed in the industries with greater exposure to cycles (Hoynes et. al, 2012). Construction and manufacturing have experienced the largest declines in employment rate of the post-WWII era, with a 13.7 percent decline in construction employment and a 10.0 percent decline in manufacturing employment (BLS, February 2012). Despite government programs to level the playing field such as affirmative action laws and other aid that is available to those seeking employment, there is a continuous disparity among different ethnic groups. With regard to “The Great Recession,” there is a disparity among the unemployment rates of Hispanics and other ethnic groups. This paper intends to explain why there is a disparity. Specifically, it addresses reasons that the unemployment rates of Hispanics are more adversely affected by the Great Recession when compared to the unemployment rates of other minority groups. Also, did concentrations of Hispanics in adversely affected industries contribute to higher unemployment levels during the Great Recession?