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Emigration of Immigrants and Measures of Immigrant Assimilation: Evidence from Sweden

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  • Edin, Per-Anders

    ()
    (Department of Economics)

  • LaLonde, Robert J.

    (Department of Economics)

  • Åslund, Olof

    (Department of Economics)

Abstract

Most previously used measures of immigrant labor market assimilation will be biased if there is non-random emigration of immigrants. We use longitudinal data on immigration to Sweden 1970-1990 to examine the extent and pattern of immigrant emigration and its consequences for measures of assimilation. Large fractions of the immigrants leave the host country shortly after arrival; within five years, more than a quarter of the people studied emigrated. As expected, economic migrants are much more likely to emigrate than political ones. Further, within these two groups, it is the least economically successful who leave. This creates the impression that immigrants’ well-being relative to natives improves with time in Sweden. However, not adjusting for emigration leads to overestimating the rate of economic assimilation, for Nordic and OECD immigrants by about much as 75 percent.90 percent or more.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Uppsala University, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number 2000:13.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 20 Sep 2000
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Swedish Economic Policy Review, 2000, pages 163-204.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:uunewp:2000_013

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, Uppsala University, P. O. Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: + 46 18 471 25 00
Fax: + 46 18 471 14 78
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Web page: http://www.nek.uu.se/
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Keywords: Assimilation; immigration; return migration;

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  1. Edin, Per-Anders & Fredriksson, Peter, 2000. "LINDA - Longitudinal INdividual DAta for Sweden," Working Paper Series 2000:19, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  2. Robert J. LaLonde & Robert H. Topel, 1992. "The Assimilation of Immigrants in the U. S. Labor Market," NBER Chapters, in: Immigration and the Workforce: Economic Consequences for the United States and Source Areas, pages 67-92 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. George J. Borjas & Bernt Bratsberg, 1994. "Who Leaves? The Outmigration of the Foreign-Born," NBER Working Papers 4913, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. George J. Borjas, 1988. "Immigration And Self-Selection," NBER Working Papers 2566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Chiswick, Barry R, 1978. "The Effect of Americanization on the Earnings of Foreign-born Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 897-921, October.
  6. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-89, October.
  7. Robert Warren & Jennifer Peck, 1980. "Foreign-Born Emigration From The United States: 1960 To 1970," Demography, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 71-84, February.
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