Black Economics 101: A Reader

The Top News, Magazine, and Scholarly Articles in Black Economics and Business

Top 12 Introductory Articles to Read on Black Economics and Business

5 Facts about Blacks in the US (Pew Research)

Income and spending patterns for Black Households (Bureau of Labor Statistics). The US census is the original source for almost all data.

State of Black America (National Urban League). Black Equity Index (National Urban League).

Examining the Black-white wealth gap (Brookings) – Probably the most cited article.  It is used constantly. Uses the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) from the Federal Reserve.

The Case for Reparations (Atlantic) – Ta Nehisi Coates. The article that started it all. Ta-Nehisi Coates Revisits the Case for Reparations (New Yorker) – Some additional comments.

Squeezing the middle class: Income trajectories from 1967 to 2016 (Brookings) – Stephen Rose is one of the top scholars of income inequality.

The Economic State of Black America in 2020 (Joint Economic Committee)

Extensive Data Shows Punishing Reach of Racism on Black Boys (NY Times) — Raj Chetty. Society is completely stacked against Black men and boys.

Racial wealth inequality: Social problems and solutions (YouTube) – a Panel discussion from Brookings

Black Business

Black Owned Business Statistics (Black Demographics)

Black Entrepreneurs: Small Business Trends 2020 (Guidant Financial)

The Decline of Black Business (Washington Monthly)

Our Black Year – Maggie Anderson (NY Times). Anderson finds out how difficult it is to shop from Black Businesses only.

Black Business

Black Economics

Five-star reviews, one-star profits: The devaluation of businesses in Black communities (Brookings). Interesting study of black businesses using Yelp review data.

Bold Policies for Economic Justice

Review of Black Political

Summary: Federal job guarantee and Baby Bonds — Double check this one

Living Wage / Minimum Wage

Washington Center for Equitable Growth


Minorities who “Whiten” their resume get more interviews (Harvard Business School)

Are Emily and Greg More Employable Than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination (American Economic Review)

Inequality in US Society

Systematic Inequality and Economic Opportunity (Center for American Progress) – August 2019.  One of the defining papers on discrimination.

Here’s What Economists Don’t Understand About Race (Institute for New Economic Thinking) — Economists have long ignored discrimination as “inefficent.” yet it persists. There article explains why it continues and how economists can study it. Also features William Darity.

Real Estate, Black Homeownership and Redlining

The great recession hammered home ownership for Blacks with or without college degrees. (Economic Policy Institute)

The Effects of the 1930s HOLC “Redlining” Maps (Chicago Fed) – 2017 / August 2020 Update

Redlining maps from Home Owners Loan Corporation ( – Original redlining maps from HOLC. The maps were commission by the federal government and used by banks to decided where to make loans for home purchases.

The World Economic Forum also has maps that compare the redlining maps to current segregated housing populations (WEF)


How the GI Bill Left Out African Americans (Demos)

Discrimination / Structural Racism

Systematic Inequality and Economic Opportunity (Center for American Progress) – August 2019.  One of the defining papers on discrimination.

Extensive Data Shows Punishing Reach of Racism for Black Boys (NY Times)

Race and Economic Opportunity in the United States: An Intergenerational Perspective (Paper and Research)
Summary: Black Boys face impossible odds in our society.

Detailed Maps Show How Neighborhoods Shape Children for Life (NY Times) Summary: Where you live determines how well you will do

The Opportunity Atlas: Mapping the Childhood Roots of Social Mobility

Summary: Where you live decides how well you will do in life

College Inequality

Some Colleges Have More Students From the Top 1 Percent Than the Bottom 60(NY Times)

The Case for Reparation by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Off Shoring / Outsourcing

China Shock

David Autor discusses the devastation of out-sourcing manufacturing to China Summary: Telling us what we knew already; 20 years to late.


National Academies of Science: The Economic and Fiscal Consequences of Immigration

Summary: Immigrants benefit the most from immigration especially professionals. Immigrants complete directly with recent immigrants and high school educated workers depressing wages. Immigration also benefits immigrant employers and upper income people. Immigrants are a small net fiscal drag on the economy but their children are a net plus.

Black and White Access to business capital

Historical Articles

Kenner report place holder

The Moynihan Report The Negro Family: The Case for National Action 

The Atlantic

Black Past


1619 Project
Native Americans owned slaves


African Americans College Majors and Earnings – 2016

Shareholder Value

Business Roundtable Redefines the Purpose of a Corporation to Promote ‘An Economy That Serves All Americans’ (Business Roundtable)