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Racial Disparities in Frontline Workers and Housing Crowding during COVID-19: Evidence from Geolocation Data

Milena Almagro, Joshua Coven (), Arpit Gupta and Angelo Orane-Hutchinson ()

No 37, Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute Working Papers from Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

Abstract: We document that racial disparities in COVID-19 in New York City stem from patterns of commuting and housing crowding. During the initial wave of the pandemic, we find that out-of-home activity related to commuting is strongly associated with COVID-19 cases at the ZIP Code level and hospitalization at an individual level. After layoffs of essential workers decreased commuting, we find case growth continued through household crowding. A larger share of individuals in crowded housing or commuting to essential work are Black, Hispanic, and lower-income. As a result, structural inequalities, rather than population density, play a role in determining the cross-section of COVID-19 risk exposure in urban areas.

Keywords: Coronavirus; COVID-19; Housing crowding; Mobility; Racial disparities (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I10 J15 R23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 36
Date: 2020-09-23
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem, nep-isf, nep-lab and nep-ure
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:fip:fedmoi:88803

DOI: 10.21034/iwp.37

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