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Do immigrant workers depress the wages of native workers?

Author

Listed:
  • Giovanni Peri

    (University of California, Davis, USA, and IZA, Germany)

Abstract

Politicians, the media, and the public express concern that immigrants depress wages by competing with native workers, but 30 years of empirical research provide little supporting evidence to this claim. Most studies for industrialized countries have found no effect on wages, on average, and only modest effects on wage differentials between more and less educated immigrant and native workers. Native workers’ wages have been insulated by differences in skills, adjustments in local demand and technology, production expansion, and specialization of native workers as immigration rises.

Suggested Citation

  • Giovanni Peri, 2014. "Do immigrant workers depress the wages of native workers?," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 1-42, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izawol:journl:y:2014:n:42
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Rachel M. Friedberg, 2001. "The Impact of Mass Migration on the Israeli Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1373-1408.
    2. Giovanni Peri & Chad Sparber, 2016. "Task Specialization, Immigration, and Wages," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 3, pages 81-115 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    3. Simonetta Longhi & Peter Nijkamp & Jacques Poot, 2005. "A Meta-Analytic Assessment of the Effect of Immigration on Wages," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 451-477, July.
    4. Blau, Francine D. & Kahn, Lawrence M., 2012. "Immigration and the Distribution of Incomes," IZA Discussion Papers 6921, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Francesco D'Amuri & Giovanni Peri, 2016. "Immigration, Jobs, And Employment Protection: Evidence From Europe Before And During The Great Recession," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 5, pages 153-185 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    6. 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.
    7. Giovanni Peri, 2012. "The Effect Of Immigration On Productivity: Evidence From U.S. States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 348-358, February.
    8. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2016. "The economic value of cultural diversity: evidence from US cities," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 7, pages 229-264 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    9. Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2016. "Rethinking The Effect Of Immigration On Wages," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 2, pages 35-80 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    10. George J. Borjas, 2003. "The Labor Demand Curve is Downward Sloping: Reexamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 9755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. George J. Borjas, 2003. "The Labor Demand Curve is Downward Sloping: Reexamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(4), pages 1335-1374.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. World Bank Group & Royal Government of Bhutan Ministry of Labor and Human Resources, 2016. "Bhutan’s Labor Market," World Bank Other Operational Studies 25703, The World Bank.
    2. repec:spr:jopoec:v:30:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s00148-017-0636-1 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Anthony Edo & Lionel Ragot & Hillel Rapoport & Sulin Sardoschau & Andreas Steinmayr, 2018. "The Effects of Immigration in Developed Countries: Insights from Recent Economic Research," CEPII Policy Brief 2018-22, CEPII research center.
    4. Philip L. Martin, 2016. "Migration, Trade and Remittances: Low- and High-Skilled Workers," Remittances Review, Transnational Press London, UK, vol. 1(1), pages 39-52, October.
    5. Ivlevs, Artjoms & Veliziotis, Michail, 2015. "Local-Level Immigration and Life Satisfaction: The EU Enlargement Experience in England and Wales," IZA Discussion Papers 9513, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Angela Parenti & Cristina Tealdi, 2017. "Does the abolition of border controls boost cross-border commuting? Evidence from Switzerland," Discussion Papers 2017/213, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.
    7. World Bank Group, 2015. "Malaysia Economic Monitor, December 2015," World Bank Other Operational Studies 23565, The World Bank.
    8. Marianne Frank Hansen & Marie Louise Schultz-Nielsen & Torben Tranæs, 2017. "The fiscal impact of immigration to welfare states of the Scandinavian type," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(3), pages 925-952, July.
    9. Giuntella, Osea & Mazzonna, Fabrizio, 2015. "Do immigrants improve the health of natives?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 140-153.
    10. Tausch, Arno, 2015. "Europe’s Refugee Crisis. Zur aktuellen politischen Ökonomie von Migration, Asyl und Integration in Europa
      [Europe's Refugee Crisis. On the current political economy of migration, asylum and integra
      ," MPRA Paper 67400, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Rodrik, Dani, 2017. "Is Global Equality the Enemy of National Equality?," CEPR Discussion Papers 11812, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    12. Giovanni Peri & Vasil Yasenov, 2015. "The Labor Market Effects of a Refugee Wave: Applying the Synthetic Control Method to the Mariel Boatlift," NBER Working Papers 21801, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    immigration; wages; productivity; complementarity; skills; wage distribution; dynamic adjustments;

    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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