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The Persistence of Self-Employment Across Borders: New Evidence on Legal Immigrants to the United States

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Author Info

  • Randall K.Q Akee

    ()
    (University of California, Los Angeles and IZA)

  • David A Jaeger

    ()
    (City University of New York Graduate Center, University of Cologne, and NBER)

  • Konstantinos Tatsiramos

    ()
    (University of Leicester and IZA)

Abstract

Using recently-available data from the New Immigrant Survey, we find that previous self-employment experience in an immigrant's country of origin is an important determinant of self-employment status in the U.S., increasing the probability of being self-employed by about 7 percent relative to an unconditional self-employment probability of about 10 percent. This effect is statistically significant and quantitatively important, being equivalent to at least 7 years of U.S.-based education. Our results improve on the previous literature by measuring home-country self-employment directly rather than relying on proxy measures.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by AccessEcon in its journal Economics Bulletin.

Volume (Year): 33 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 126-137

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Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-12-00727

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Keywords: Self-employment; entrepreneurship; New Immigrant Survey;

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References

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  1. George J. Borjas, 1986. "The Self-Employment Experience of Immigrants," NBER Working Papers 1942, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Magnus Lofstrom, 2002. "Labor market assimilation and the self-employment decision of immigrant entrepreneurs," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 83-114.
  3. Julie Zissimopoulos & Lynn A. Karoly, 2003. "Transitions to Self-Employment at Older Ages: The Role of Wealth, Health, Health Insurance, and Other Factors," Working Papers 135, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  4. Evans, David S & Jovanovic, Boyan, 1989. "An Estimated Model of Entrepreneurial Choice under Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 808-27, August.
  5. Evans, David S & Leighton, Linda S, 1989. "Some Empirical Aspects of Entrepreneurship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 519-35, June.
  6. Lee, Lung-Fei, 1978. "Unionism and Wage Rates: A Simultaneous Equations Model with Qualitative and Limited Dependent Variables," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 19(2), pages 415-33, June.
  7. Heckman, James J, 1974. "Shadow Prices, Market Wages, and Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 42(4), pages 679-94, July.
  8. George J. Borjas & Stephen G. Bronars, 1989. "Consumer Discrimination and Self-Employment," NBER Working Papers 2627, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Blanchflower, David G & Meyer, Bruce D, 1994. " A Longitudinal Analysis of the Young Self-Employed in Australia and the United States," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 1-19, February.
  10. Robert W. Fairlie & Bruce D. Meyer, 1996. "Ethnic and Racial Self-Employment Differences and Possible Explanations," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 31(4), pages 757-793.
  11. George J. Borjas, 1986. "The Self-Employment Experience of Immigrants," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(4), pages 485-506.
  12. Edward P. Lazear, 2004. "Balanced Skills and Entrepreneurship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 208-211, May.
  13. Erik Hurst & Annamaria Lusardi, 2004. "Liquidity Constraints, Household Wealth, and Entrepreneurship," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 319-347, April.
  14. Bates, Timothy, 1995. "Self-employment entry across industry groups," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 143-156, March.
  15. James J. Heckman, 1981. "Heterogeneity and State Dependence," NBER Chapters, in: Studies in Labor Markets, pages 91-140 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Michael J. Pisani & José A. Pag�n, 2004. "Self-employment in the era of the new economic model in Latin America: a case study from Nicaragua," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(4), pages 335-350, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Caio Waisman & João Manoel Pinho de Mello & Eduardo Zilberman, 2013. "The Effects of Exposure to Hyperinflation on Occupational Choice," Textos para discussão 614, Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil).

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