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I'll marry you if you get me a job: Marital assimilation and immigrant employment rates

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  • Delia Furtado
  • Nikolaos Theodoropoulos

Abstract

Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to test whether marriage to a native affects the probability that an immigrant will be employed. Design/methodology/approach - Utilizing 2000 US Census data, first the effect of cross-nativity marriages on employment is examined using an ordinary least squares model. To deal with endogeneity concerns, a two-stage least squares model instrument for marriage to a native using local marriage market conditions is then estimated. Findings - Results from an ordinary least squares model controlling for the usual measures of human capital and immigrant assimilation suggest that marriage to a native increases an immigrant's employment probability by approximately four percentage points. When taking into account the endogeneity of the intermarriage decision, marriage to a native increases the probability of employment by about 11 percentage points. Research limitations/implications - Although various mechanisms are discussed through which marriage to a native can increase employment probabilities of immigrants, the authors do not disentangle these mechanisms. This is an area ripe for future research. Originality/value - It is shown that, from a theoretical perspective, marriage to a native has an ambiguous effect on immigrant employment rates. The empirical answer to this question provides insights into the assimilation process, which may prove useful in designing optimal immigration policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Delia Furtado & Nikolaos Theodoropoulos, 2009. "I'll marry you if you get me a job: Marital assimilation and immigrant employment rates," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 30(1/2), pages 116-126, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:30:y:2009:i:1/2:p:116-126
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Xin Meng, 2009. "Intermarriage, language, and economic assimilation process: A case study of France," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 30(1/2), pages 127-144, March.
    2. Rosen, Sherwin, 2007. "Studies in Labor Markets," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, number 9780226726304.
    3. Cutler, David M. & Glaeser, Edward L. & Vigdor, Jacob L., 2008. "When are ghettos bad? Lessons from immigrant segregation in the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 759-774, May.
    4. Xin Meng & Robert G. Gregory, 2005. "Intermarriage and the Economic Assimilation of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(1), pages 135-176, January.
    5. Marianne Bertrand & Erzo F. P. Luttmer & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2000. "Network Effects and Welfare Cultures," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, pages 1019-1055.
    6. Josh Angrist, 2002. "How Do Sex Ratios Affect Marriage and Labor Markets? Evidence from America's Second Generation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, pages 997-1038.
    7. Borjas, George J & Bratsberg, Bernt, 1996. "Who Leaves? The Outmigration of the Foreign-Born," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, pages 165-176.
    8. Barry R. Chiswick & Yinon Cohen & Tzippi Zach, 1997. "The Labor Market Status of Immigrants: Effects of the Unemployment Rate at Arrival and Duration of Residence," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, pages 289-303.
    9. Moffitt, Robert, 1985. "Unemployment insurance and the distribution of unemployment spells," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, pages 85-101.
    10. Kaivan Munshi, 2003. "Networks in the Modern Economy: Mexican Migrants in the U. S. Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(2), pages 549-599.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Chunbei Wang & Le Wang, 2012. "The effects of 9/11 on intermarriage between natives and immigrants to the U.S," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-192, June.
    2. Miao Chi, 2017. "Improved legal status as the major source of earnings premiums associated with intermarriage: evidence from the 1986 IRCA amnesty," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 691-706, June.
    3. Gil S. Epstein & Renana Lindnerā€Pomerantz, 2017. "The Survival of Unique Corporate Cultures," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 38(4), pages 622-629, June.
    4. Nottmeyer, Olga, 2011. "Couple's Relative Labor Supply in Intermarriage," IZA Discussion Papers 5567, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Olga Nottmeyer, 2014. "Relative labor supply in intermarriage," IZA Journal of Migration, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 3(1), pages 1-27, December.
    6. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Kusum Mundra, 2013. "Immigrant Homeownership and Immigration Status: Evidence from Spain," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(2), pages 204-218, May.
    7. Furtado, Delia & Song, Tao, 2014. "Trends in the Returns to Social Assimilation: Earnings Premiums among U.S. Immigrants that Marry Natives," IZA Discussion Papers 8626, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Rebekka Christopoulou & Dean R. Lillard, 2016. "Migration to the US and marital mobility," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 14(3), pages 669-694, September.
    9. Gil S. Epstein & Renana Lindner Pomerantz, 2013. "Assimilation through Marriage," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, pages 191-203.
    10. Chi, Miao & Drewianka, Scott, 2014. "How much is a green card worth? Evidence from Mexican men who marry women born in the U.S," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 103-116.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mixed marriages; Employment; Immigration; Probability theory;

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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