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Migration, Self-selection, and Income Distributions: Evidence from Rural and Urban China

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  • Xing, Chunbing

Abstract

As massive rural residents leave their home countryside for better employment, migration has profound effects on income distributions such as rural-urban income gap and inequalities within rural or urban areas. The nature of the effects depend crucially on who are migrating and their migrating patterns. In this paper, we emphasize two facts. First, rural residents are not homogeneous, they self-select to migrate or not. Second, there are significant differences between migrants who successfully transformed their hukou status (permanent migrants) and those did not (temporary migrants). Using three coordinated CHIP data sets in 2002, we find that permanent migrants are positively selected from rural population especially in terms of education. As permanent migration takes more mass from the upper half of rural income density, both rural income level and inequalities decrease, the urban-rural income ratio increases at the same time. On the contrary, the selection effect of temporary migrants is almost negligible. It does not have obvious effect on rural income level and inequalities.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 17036.

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Date of creation: Jun 2009
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:17036

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Keywords: migration; self-selection; China;

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  1. Park, Albert & Wang, Dewen, 2010. "Migration and Urban Poverty and Inequality in China," IZA Discussion Papers 4877, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Michel, BEINE & Frédéric, DOCQUIER & Hillel, RAPOPORT, 2006. "Brain drain and human capital formation in developing countries : winners and losers," Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques), Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques 2006023, Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques.
  3. Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2002. "International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States," NBER Working Papers 9242, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Melissa S. Kearney, 2005. "Trends in U. S. Wage Inequality: Re-Assessing the Revisionists," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2095, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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  6. José Mata & José A. F. Machado, 2005. "Counterfactual decomposition of changes in wage distributions using quantile regression," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(4), pages 445-465.
  7. de Brauw, Alan & Huang, Jikun & Rozelle, Scott & Zhang, Linxiu & Zhang, Yigang, 2002. "The Evolution of China's Rural Labor Markets During the Reforms," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 329-353, June.
  8. Thomas Lemieux, 2006. "Increasing Residual Wage Inequality: Composition Effects, Noisy Data, or Rising Demand for Skill?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 461-498, June.
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  10. Borjas, George J., 1999. "The economic analysis of immigration," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 28, pages 1697-1760 Elsevier.
  11. meng, xin, 1994. "An examination of wage determination in China’s rural industrial sector," MPRA Paper 1344, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Foster, Andrew D. & Rosenzweig, Mark R., 2008. "Economic Development and the Decline of Agricultural Employment," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier.
  13. Zhong Zhao, 2005. "Migration, Labor Market Flexibility, and Wage Determination in China: A Review," Labor and Demography, EconWPA 0507009, EconWPA.
  14. Zhang, Junsen & Zhao, Yaohui & Park, Albert & Song, Xiaoqing, 2005. "Economic returns to schooling in urban China, 1988 to 2001," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 730-752, December.
  15. Du, Yang & Park, Albert & Wang, Sangui, 2005. "Migration and rural poverty in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 688-709, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Liu, Yang, 2012. "Does Internal Immigration Always Lead to Urban Unemployment in Emerging Economies? : A Structural Approach Based on Data from China," Hitotsubashi Journal of Economics, Hitotsubashi University, Hitotsubashi University, vol. 53(1), pages 85-105, June.
  2. John Whalley & Chunbing Xing, 2010. "The Regional Distribution of Skill Premia in Urban China," NBER Working Papers 16575, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Biavaschi, Costanza & Elsner, Benjamin, 2013. "Let's Be Selective about Migrant Self-Selection," IZA Discussion Papers 7865, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Li, Shi & Xing, Chunbing, 2010. "China's Higher Education Expansion and its Labor Market Consequences," IZA Discussion Papers 4974, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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