In the four years since the bottom fell out of the United States economy, a greater share of Asians and Hispanics are finding jobs than members of other groups, according to a report by the Pew Hispanic Center, a D.C.-based nonpartisan think tank.
Employment levels among Hispanics and Asians are higher than they were in December 2007, just before the Great Recession ravaged the U.S. economy and touched off a cascade of job loss, according to the report released in March.
In the fourth quarter of 2009, 19.5 million Hispanics were employed. In the same quarter two years later, 20.7 million Hispanics had jobs, an increase of more than 6 percent. Asians experienced job growth of nearly 7 percent over the same time period.
Although the recovery has brought modest job growth for all groups, whites and blacks have not achieved their pre-recession employment levels.
Gains among whites (up slightly more than 1 percent from 95.1 million people employed to 96.4 million) and blacks (up more than 2 percent from 14.3 million to 14.6 million) were smaller.
During the fourth quarter of 2007, the overall employment peaked at 145.8 million. By the fourth quarter of 2009, at the height of the Great Recession, the number of people working had fallen to a low of 138.1 million.
Since then, overall employment has risen to 141.2 million, a gain about more than 2 percent.
But the gains are somewhat misleading. The share of Hispanics and Asians that are employed has barely risen since the end of the recession. Because, although job growth among Hispanics and Asians has been more rapid than that of other groups, that growth simply kept pace with the growth of their working-age populations.
The same is true among whites and blacks. Their slow rate of job growth is mirrored by their slow rate of population growth.