Knowledge Center

Labor Force

  • In 2012:
    • Number of Asian women in the labor force:4,037,0001
    • Percentage of labor force: 2.6%2
    • Percentage of Asian women who participated in the labor force: 57.1%3
    • Number of Asian women employed in management, professional, and related occupations: 1,843,000 (3.4% of all people employed in management, professional, and related occupations)4
  • In 2000:
    • Number of Asian women in the labor force: 2,908,0005
    • Percentage of labor force: 2.0% of labor force6
  • Projections for 2022:
  • Number of Asian women in the labor force: 4,794,0007
  • Percentage of labor force: 2.9%8
  • Increase of Asian women in the labor force between 1992 and 2022:31.8%9
  • Women of color held 3.2% of board seats in the Fortune 500 in 2013, down from 3.3% in 2012 but up from 3.0% in 2011.10
  • In 2013 Asian women held only 3.3% of all women director positions.11
  • Women’s participation rate in the labor force varies by ethic group.12
    • South Asian women tend to have lower participation in the workforce: Bangladeshis (27.2%), Pakistanis (27.6%), Asian Indians (37.5%), and Sri Lankans (40.5%).13
    • In contrast, women make up a majority of the workforce among Thais (61.2%), Filipinos (55.9%), Indonesians (54.3%), Cambodians (51.4%), and Laotians (50.1%).14

Educational Achievement

  Asian/Pacific Islander Women Asian/Pacific Islander Men
Bachelor’s degrees in 2010-201115 65,776 (3.8% of those getting BA's) 55,290  (3.2% of those getting BA's)
Master’s degrees in 2010-201116 23,678 (3.2% of those getting MA's) 20,050 (2.7% of those getting MA's)
Doctoral degrees in 2010-201117 9,533  (5.8% of those getting Ph.D's)

7,545 (4.6% of those getting Ph.D's)

 

 

Income

 

  • Among full-time wage and salary workers in 2013, Asian women’s median weekly earnings were $819, compared to $1,059 for Asian men.18

 

Buying Power

 

  • Asian buying power has increased from $115.4 billion in 1990 to $609.2 billion in 2010 and is projected to climb to $1.0 trillion in 2017.19
  • The percentage change in Asians’ buying power between 1990 and 2017 is 786.2%, the highest of all race/ethnic groups.20
  • Asians’ share of the consumer market was 5.5% in 2010.21

 

How to cite this product: Catalyst. Quick Take: Asian Women in the United States. New York: Catalyst, December 10, 2013.