Earnings of second-generation Americans

October 17, 2006

In 2004, about 4.5 million second-generation workers aged 25 to 54 years and 60.8 million third-and-higher-generation workers in the same age group were employed full-time, year-round.

Median annual earnings in 2004 of the second generation and third-and-higher generation, age 25 to 54 years
[Chart data—TXT]

The 2004 median annual earnings of the second-generation workers were $40,417, somewhat higher than the $38,982 for their third-generation-and-higher counterparts.

The difference was largely because second-generation women workers had median earnings that were considerably higher ($36,275) than those of their third-generation-and-higher counterparts ($32,552). There was relatively little difference in median earnings among men for the two groups.

Second-generation Americans are defined as native-born Americans who have either one parent or both parents who are foreign born. Americans of the third and higher generations are native-born Americans whose parents are both native born.

These data are from the Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC) to the Current Population Survey. Find out more in "Labor force characteristics of second-generation Americans," by Abraham Mosisa, Monthly Labor Review, September 2006.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Earnings of second-generation Americans on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2006/oct/wk3/art02.htm (visited September 26, 2016).


Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics

  • A look at healthcare spending, employment, pay, benefits, and prices
    As one of the largest U.S. industries, healthcare is steadily growing to meet the needs of an increasing population with an increasing life expectancy. This Spotlight looks at how much people spend on healthcare, current and projected employment in the industry, employer-provided healthcare benefits, healthcare prices, and pay for workers in healthcare occupations.

  • Employment and Wages in Healthcare Occupations
    Healthcare occupations are a significant percentage of U.S. employment. Some of the largest and highest paying occupations are in healthcare. This Spotlight examines employment and wages for healthcare occupations.

  • Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
    Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.