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Keywords:

  • immigrants;
  • Latinos;
  • occupational attainment;
  • panethnicity;
  • queuing theory;
  • U.S. metropolitan

ABSTRACT. Acquiring good jobs is vital for the economic success of immigrants, yet occupational attainment is understudied in the immigration literature. One particularly neglected aspect is the role of ethnicity in occupations beyond the ethnic niche. This study examines the occupational attainment of long-term Latin American immigrants from Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Cuba, Ecuador, and Colombia in four metropolitan areas with large Latino populations. The findings show that occupational attainment varies considerably by country of origin across these areas, although important human and social capital factors also are significant variables. These findings lend support to the proposition that, for immigrants, place of origin and destination play an important role in job-queue position.