May 10, 2012
During the 2008–2010 period, among major occupational groups, Asians were most likely to work in management, professional, and related occupations (48.0 percent) and least likely to work in natural resources, construction, and maintenance occupations (4.0 percent). Compared with Asians, non-Asians were also most likely to work to work in management, professional, and related occupations (36.4 percent) and least likely to work in natural resources, construction, and maintenance occupations (10.0 percent).
Within the management, professional, and related occupations group, Asians were most likely to work in occupations such as management (10.2 percent), healthcare practitioners and technical (9.1 percent), and computer and mathematical (8.5 percent). Asians were less likely to work in life, physical, and social science occupations (2.4 percent); community and social service occupations (1.0 percent); or legal occupations (0.8 percent). Among Asian groups, Asian Indians were by far the most likely to work in computer and mathematical occupations (22.2 percent)—compared with 2.2 percent of non-Asians. Filipino workers were more than three times as likely as non-Asians to work in the healthcare practitioners and technical occupations category—18.1 percent versus 5.2 percent.
During the 2008–2010 period, 17.1 percent of employed Asians worked in service occupations—almost the same as the 17.4 percent for non-Asians. Within this occupational group, Asians were most likely to work in occupations such as food preparation and serving related (6.3), and personal care and service (5.6 percent). Among Asian groups, about one-fifth of Vietnamese workers were employed in personal care and service occupations, likely due to the relatively high employment of Vietnamese in nail salons. Asians were least likely to work in protective service occupations (0.9 percent).
Data for this article are from the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS collects data on 7 Asian groups: Asian Indians, Chinese, Filipinos, Japanese, Koreans, Vietnamese, and Other Asians. Other Asians include individuals who reported an Asian group not listed and those who reported two or more Asian groups. To learn more, see "Asians in the U.S. labor force: profile of a diverse population," by Mary Dorinda Allard, in the November 2011 issue of the Monthly Labor Review.