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Effects of Low-Skilled Immigration on U.S. Natives: Evidence from Hurricane Mitch

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  • Adriana Kugler
  • Mutlu Yuksel

Abstract

In the 1980s the composition of immigrants to the U.S. shifted towards less-skilled workers. Around this time, real wages and employment of younger and less-educated U.S. workers fell. Some blame recent immigration shifts for the misfortunes of unskilled workers in the U.S. OLS estimates using Census data show instead that native wages are positively related to the recent influx of Latin Americans. However, these estimates are biased if demand shocks are positively related to immigration. An IV strategy, which deals with the endogeneity of immigration by exploiting a large influx of Central American immigrants towards U.S. Southern ports of entry after Hurricane Mitch, also generates positive wage effects but only for more educated native men. Yet, ignoring the flows of native and earlier immigrants in response to this exogeneous immigration is likely to generate upward biases in these estimates too. Native wage effects disappear and less-skilled employment of previous Latin American immigrants falls when controlling for out-migration. This highlights the importance of controlling for out-migration not only of natives but also of previous immigrants in regional studies of immigration.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 14293.

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Date of creation: Aug 2008
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14293

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Martins, Pedro S. & Piracha, Matloob & Varejão, José, 2012. "Do Immigrants Displace Native Workers? Evidence from Matched Panel Data," IZA Discussion Papers 6644, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. S. Longhi & P. Nijkamp & J. Poot, 2008. "Meta-Analysis of Empirical Evidence on the Labour Market Impacts of Immigration," Population Studies Centre Discussion Papers dp-67, University of Waikato, Population Studies Centre.
  3. Simpson, Nicole B. & Sparber, Chad, 2012. "The Short- and Long-Run Determinants of Less-Educated Immigration into U.S. States," IZA Discussion Papers 6437, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Ali Berker, 2010. "The Labor Market Consequences of Internal Migration in Turkey," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1029, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
  5. Valentina Calderón & Ana María Ibáñez, 2005. "Labor Market Effects of Migration-Related Supply Shocks: Evidence from Internally Displaced Populations in Colombia," DOCUMENTOS CEDE 005851, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  6. Andri Chassamboulli & Theodore Palivos, 2010. "“Give me your Tired, your Poor,” so I can Prosper: Immigration in Search Equilibrium," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 12-2010, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.
  7. Morin, Louis-Philippe, 2011. "Cohort Size and Youth Earnings: Evidence from a Quasi-Experiment," CLSSRN working papers clsrn_admin-2011-28, Vancouver School of Economics, revised 28 Nov 2011.
  8. Simpson, Nicole & Sparber, Chad, 2010. "The Short-and Long-Run Determinants of Unskilled Immigration into US States," Working Papers 2010-06, Department of Economics, Colgate University.
  9. S. Longhi & P. Nijkamp & J. Poot, 2010. "Joint impacts of immigration on wages and employment: review and meta-analysis," Journal of Geographical Systems, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 355-387, December.
  10. Giovanni Peri & Chad Sparber, 2007. "Task Specialization, Comparative Advantages, and the Effects of Immigration on Wages," NBER Working Papers 13389, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Giovanni Peri, 2008. "Immigration Accounting: U.S. States 1960-2006," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0805, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  12. Giovanni Peri & Chad Sparber, 2009. "Task Specialization, Immigration, and Wages," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(3), pages 135-69, July.

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