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Did immigration contribute to wage stagnation of unskilled workers?

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  • Peri, Giovanni

Abstract

In this paper we first show that the timing and skill distribution of Immigrants to the U.S. between 1970 and 2014 imply they did not contribute to the decline in the wages of native, non-college educated workers – including high school dropouts – at the national level. We then review other evidence at the local level, which implies immigration is not associated with lower non-college wages. Rather, higher immigration seems associated with higher average (and college-level) wages. Local externalities, complementarities, efficient specialization and appropriate technological choice suggest at least part of the positive association is causal.

Suggested Citation

  • Peri, Giovanni, 2018. "Did immigration contribute to wage stagnation of unskilled workers?," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 356-365.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:reecon:v:72:y:2018:i:2:p:356-365
    DOI: 10.1016/j.rie.2017.02.005
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2021. "Rethinking The Effect Of Immigration On Wages," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Firms and Workers in a Globalized World Larger Markets, Tougher Competition, chapter 9, pages 245-290, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
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