Recession Begins to Bite Asian Americans
Asian American unemployment jumped from 6.7% to 8.2% (not seasonally adjusted) from May to June. While Asian Americans in the last several years have had the lowest unemployment rates of all the racial groups, their unemployment rates are now approaching those of Whites, whose comparable June unemployment rate was 8.8%. For Blacks and Hispanics, the comparable June rates were 15.3% and 12.1%.
As another indication of the economic effects on at least a segment of the Asian American population, the Korea Times indicated an increase in Korean American suicides in New York City, attributed to “the economic crisis have led some people to suffer from self-hatred.” The Korean American suicide rate of 31 in the first half year is four times that of the general population.
More positively, MetLife reported that 38% of Asian Americans have saved enough to sustain themselves on unemployment versus 26% as the population as a whole. Asian Americans however have the highest percentage concerned about losing their employment.
The survey is available here.