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How do very open economies adjust to large immigration flows? Recent evidence from Spanish regions

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Abstract

In recent years, Spain has received unprecedented immigration flows. Between 2001 and 2006 the fraction of the population born abroad more than doubled, increasing from 4.8% to 10.8%. For Spanish provinces with above-median inflows (relative to population), immigration increased by 24% the number of high school dropouts while only increasing college graduates by 11%. We study different channels by which regional labor markets have absorbed the large increase in relative supply of low educated workers. We identify the exogenous supply shock using historical immigrant settlement patterns by country of origin. Using data from the Labor Force Survey and the decennial Census, we find a large expansion of employment in high immigration regions. Disaggregating by industry, the absorption operated through large increases in the share of low-educated workers, compared to the same industry in low-immigration regions. We do not find changes in sectoral specialization. Overall, and perhaps surprisingly, the pattern of absorption is very similar to the one found in the US.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 1059.

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Date of creation: Nov 2007
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Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:1059

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Keywords: Immigration; Open Economies; Rybcszynski; Instrumental Variables;

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  1. Borjas, George J & Freeman, Richard B & Katz, Lawrence, 1996. "Searching for the Effect of Immigration on the Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 246-51, May.
  2. Neil Gandal & Gordon H. Hanson & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2000. "Technology, Trade, and Adjustment to Immigration in Israel," NBER Working Papers 7962, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Hanson, Gordon H. & Slaughter, Matthew J., 2002. "Labor-market adjustment in open economies: Evidence from US states," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 3-29, June.
  9. Ethan Lewis, 2003. "Local, open economies within the U.S.: how do industries respond to immigration?," Working Papers 04-1, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
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Cited by:
  1. Jordi Jofre-Monseny (Universitat de Barcelona & Institut dEconomia de Barcelona (IEB)) & Pilar Sorribas-Navarro (Universitat de Barcelona & Institut dEconomia de Barcelona (IEB)) & Javier Vazquez-Gren, 2011. "Welfare spending and ethnic heterogeneity: Evidence from a massive immigration wave," Working Papers in Economics 269, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
  2. Javier Vázquez-Grenno, 2012. "Job search methods in times of crisis: native and immigrant strategies in Spain," Working Papers 2012/19, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  3. Giulia Bettin & Alessia Lo Turco & Daniela Maggioni, 2012. "A Firm-Level Perspective on Migration," Development Working Papers 328, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 27 Mar 2012.
  4. Gonzalez, Libertad & Ortega, Francesc, 2009. "Immigration and Housing Booms: Evidence from Spain," IZA Discussion Papers 4333, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Tommaso Frattini, 2008. "The labour market impact of immigration," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(3), pages 478-495, Autumn.
  6. M. Angeles Carnero Fernández & Lídia Farré Olalla & Mariano Bosch, 2011. "Rental housing discrimination and the persistence of ethnic enclaves," Working Papers. Serie AD 2011-10, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).

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