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The Effect of Minimum Wages on Immigrants’ Employment and Earnings

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Author Info

  • Orrenius, Pia M.

    ()
    (Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas)

  • Zavodny, Madeline

    ()
    (Agnes Scott College)

Abstract

This study examines how minimum wage laws affect the employment and earnings of low-skilled immigrants and natives in the U.S. Minimum wage increases might have larger effects among low-skilled immigrants than among natives because, on average, immigrants earn less than natives due to lower levels of education, limited English skills, and less social capital. Results based on data from the Current Population Survey for the years 1994-2005 do not indicate that minimum wages have adverse employment effects among adult immigrants or natives who did not complete high school. However, low-skilled immigrants may have been discouraged from settling in states that set wage floors substantially above the federal minimum.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3499.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: May 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Industrial and Labor Relations Review, 2008, 61 (4), 544-563
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3499

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Keywords: minimum wage; low-skilled; immigrants;

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References

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  1. Neumark, David & Wascher, William, 2007. "Minimum Wages, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and Employment: Evidence from the Post-Welfare Reform Era," IZA Discussion Papers 2610, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  3. Ottaviano, Gianmarco Ireo Paolo & Peri, Giovanni, 2005. "Rethinking the Gains from Immigration: Theory and Evidence from the US," CEPR Discussion Papers 5226, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Kristin F. Butcher & John DiNardo, 2002. "The Immigrant and native-born wage distributions: Evidence from United States censuses," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(1), pages 97-121, October.
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  7. Kenneth A. Couch & David C. Wittenburg, 2001. "The Response of Hours of Work to Increases in the Minimum Wage," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 68(1), pages 171-177, July.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Anita Alves Pena, 2013. "Do Minimum Wage Laws Affect People Who Are Not Covered? Evidence from Documented and Undocumented, Hourly and Piece Rate Workers in U.S. Agriculture," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 13-194, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  2. Eva Lajtkepová, 2010. "Minimum Wage and Labour Market," Acta Oeconomica Pragensia, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2010(1), pages 3-20.
  3. Cadena, Brian C., 2014. "Recent immigrants as labor market arbitrageurs: Evidence from the minimum wage," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 1-12.
  4. Jonathan Meer & Jeremy West, 2013. "Effects of the Minimum Wage on Employment Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 19262, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Kahanec, Martin, 2012. "Report No. 49: Skilled Labor Flows: Lessons from the European Union," IZA Research Reports 49, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Martin Kahanec, 2013. "Skilled Labor Flows: Lessons from the European Union," Research Reports 1, Central European Labour Studies Institute (CELSI).
  7. Sen, Anindya & Rybczynski, Kathleen & Van De Waal, Corey, 2011. "Teen employment, poverty, and the minimum wage: Evidence from Canada," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 36-47, January.

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