A Nation of Immigrants: Assimilation and Economic Outcomes in the Age of Mass Migration
AbstractDuring the Age of Mass Migration (1850-1913), the US maintained an open border, absorbing 30 million European immigrants. Prior cross-sectional work on this era finds that immigrants initially held lower-paid occupations than natives but experienced rapid convergence over time. In newly-assembled panel data, we show that, in fact, the average immigrant did not face a substantial occupation-based earnings penalty upon first arrival and experienced occupational advancement at the same rate as natives. Cross-sectional patterns are driven by biases from declining arrival cohort quality and departures of negatively-selected return migrants. We show that assimilation patterns vary substantially across sending countries and persist in the second generation.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18011.
Date of creation: Apr 2012
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
- J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
- N31 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-05-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-CWA-2012-05-02 (Central & Western Asia)
- NEP-LAB-2012-05-02 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-MIG-2012-05-02 (Economics of Human Migration)
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