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The impact of immigration on the wage distribution in Switzerland

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  • Sandro Favre
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    Abstract

    Recent immigrants in Switzerland are overrepresented at the top of the wage distribution in high and at the bottom in low skill occupations. Basic economic theory thus suggests that immigration has led to a compression of the wage distribution in the former group and to an expansion in the latter. The data confirm this proposition for high skill occupations, but reveal effects close to zero for low skill occupations. While the estimated wage effects are of considerable magnitude at the tails of the wage distribution in high skill occupations, the effects on overall inequality are shown to be negligible.

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    File URL: http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/wp/econwp022.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Department of Economics - University of Zurich in its series ECON - Working Papers with number 022.

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    Date of creation: Aug 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:zur:econwp:022

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    Keywords: Immigration; wage distribution; occupation groups; inequality;

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    1. Jennifer Hunt, 1992. "The impact of the 1962 repatriates from Algeria on the French labor market," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(3), pages 556-572, April.
    2. Rachel M. Friedberg, 2001. "The Impact Of Mass Migration On The Israeli Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1373-1408, November.
    3. Michael Gerfin & Boris Kaiser, 2010. "The Effects of Immigration on Wages: An Application of the Structural Skill-Cell Approach," Diskussionsschriften dp1012, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.
    4. Yannis M. Ioannides & Linda Datcher Loury, 2004. "Job Information Networks, Neighborhood Effects, and Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1056-1093, December.
    5. Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Tommaso Frattini, 2008. "The Labour Market Impact of Immigration," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0811, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
    6. Ottaviano, Gianmarco I. P. & Peri, Giovanni, 2007. "Rethinking the effects of immigration on wages," HWWI Research Papers 3-8, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
    7. David Card, 1990. "The impact of the Mariel boatlift on the Miami labor market," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 43(2), pages 245-257, January.
    8. Christian Dustmann & Tommaso Frattini & Ian P. Preston, 2013. "The Effect of Immigration along the Distribution of Wages," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(1), pages 145-173.
    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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