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I'll marry you if you get me a job: Marital assimilation and immigrant employment rates

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Author Info

  • Delia Furtado
  • Nikolaos Theodoropoulos

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to test whether marriage to a native affects the probability that an immigrant will be employed. Design/methodology/approach – Utilizing 2000 US Census data, first the effect of cross-nativity marriages on employment is examined using an ordinary least squares model. To deal with endogeneity concerns, a two-stage least squares model instrument for marriage to a native using local marriage market conditions is then estimated. Findings – Results from an ordinary least squares model controlling for the usual measures of human capital and immigrant assimilation suggest that marriage to a native increases an immigrant's employment probability by approximately four percentage points. When taking into account the endogeneity of the intermarriage decision, marriage to a native increases the probability of employment by about 11 percentage points. Research limitations/implications – Although various mechanisms are discussed through which marriage to a native can increase employment probabilities of immigrants, the authors do not disentangle these mechanisms. This is an area ripe for future research. Originality/value – It is shown that, from a theoretical perspective, marriage to a native has an ambiguous effect on immigrant employment rates. The empirical answer to this question provides insights into the assimilation process, which may prove useful in designing optimal immigration policies.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal International Journal of Manpower.

Volume (Year): 30 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1/2 (May)
Pages: 116-126

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Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:30:y:2009:i:1/2:p:116-126

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Related research

Keywords: Employment; Immigration; Mixed marriages; Probability theory;

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Cited by:
  1. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Kusum Mundra, 2013. "Immigrant Homeownership and Immigration Status: Evidence from Spain," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1301, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  2. Epstein, Gil S. & Lindner Pomerantz, Renana, 2012. "Assimilation through Marriage," IZA Discussion Papers 6831, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Chunbei Wang & Le Wang, 2012. "The effects of 9/11 on intermarriage between natives and immigrants to the U.S," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-192, June.
  4. Nottmeyer, Olga, 2011. "Couple's Relative Labor Supply in Intermarriage," IZA Discussion Papers 5567, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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