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Crossing the Border: Self-selection, Earnings and Individual Migration Decisions

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  • Simone Bertoli

    ()
    (Institute for Employment Research)

  • Jesus Fernandez-Huertas Moraga

    ()
    (Institute for Economic Analysis, CSIC)

  • Francesc Ortega

    ()
    (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)

Abstract

Many empirical studies on the determinants of international migration flows rely exclusively on macro data, and do not account for migrants' self-selection. We analyze a very interesting episode in international migration for which we are able to gather individual-level data covering all relevant countries, namely the exodus of Ecuadorians to Spain and the US in the aftermath of the economic collapse of 1999. Specifically, we produce selectioncorrected predictions of counterfactual individual earnings and use them to estimate a discrete-choice migration equation that allows for correlated errors across destinations and a rich structure of migration costs. We find that earnings significantly shape individual migration decisions, even in an episode in which Ecuadorians mostly chose Spain where earnings were lower than in the US, and they contribute to explaining the observed composition of migration flows. Moreover, our estimates show that changes in earnings at a particular destination have a larger effect on destination choice conditional on migration than on the scale of migration.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London in its series CReAM Discussion Paper Series with number 1011.

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Date of creation: May 2010
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Handle: RePEc:crm:wpaper:1011

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Keywords: international migration; self-selection; earnings; individual-level data;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Isabelle Chort & Jean-Noël Senne, 2013. "Intra-household Selection into Migration: Evidence from a Matched Sample of Migrants and Origin Households in Senegal," PSE Working Papers halshs-00877071, HAL.
  2. Farré, Lídia, 2013. "New Evidence on the Healthy Immigrant Effect," IZA Discussion Papers 7840, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Catia Batista & Tara McIndoe- Calder & Pedro C. Vicente, 2014. "Return Migration, Self-Selection and Entrepreneurship in Mozambique," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1417, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  4. Ortega, Francesc & Peri, Giovanni, 2014. "Openness and income: The roles of trade and migration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 231-251.
  5. Joan Llull, 2013. "Understanding International Migration: Evidence from a New Dataset of Bilateral Stocks (1960-2000)," Working Papers 715, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  6. Sara de la Rica & Albretch Glitz & Francesc Ortega, 2013. "Immigration in Europe: Trends, Policies and Empirical Evidence," Working Papers 2013-16, FEDEA.
  7. Ortega, Francesc & Peri, Giovanni, 2013. "Migration, Trade and Income," IZA Discussion Papers 7325, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Bertoli, Simone & Fernández-Huertas Moraga, Jesús, 2011. "Multilateral Resistance to Migration," IZA Discussion Papers 5958, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Simone Bertoli & Hillel Rapoport, 2013. "Heaven's Swing Door: Endogenous skills, migration networks and the effectiveness of quality-selective immigration policies," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1330, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  10. Ortega, Francesc & Peri, Giovanni, 2012. "The Role of Income and Immigration Policies in Attracting International Migrants," IZA Discussion Papers 6655, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Facundo Albornoz & Antonio Cabrales & Esther Hauk, 2011. "Immigration and the School System," Working Papers 590, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  12. repec:hal:wpaper:halshs-00877071 is not listed on IDEAS

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