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A capital mistake? The neglected effect of immigration on average wages

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  • Declan Trott

Abstract

Much recent literature on the wage effects of immigration assumes that the return to capital, and therefore the average wage, is unaffected in the long run. If immigration is modelled as a continuous flow rather than a one-off shock, this result does not necessarily hold. A simple calibration with pre-crisis US immigration rates gives a reduction in average wages of 5%, larger than most estimates of the effect on relative wages.

Suggested Citation

  • Declan Trott, 2012. "A capital mistake? The neglected effect of immigration on average wages," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(9), pages 873-876, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:19:y:2012:i:9:p:873-876
    DOI: 10.1080/13504851.2011.607116
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ottaviano, Gianmarco & Peri, Giovanni, 2008. "Immigration and National Wages: Clarifying the Theory and the Empirics," CEPR Discussion Papers 6916, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Gordon H. Hanson, 2006. "Illegal Migration from Mexico to the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(4), pages 869-924, December.
    3. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2005. "Rethinking the Gains from Immigration: Theory and Evidence from the U.S," NBER Working Papers 11672, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. George J. Borjas & Lawrence F. Katz, 2007. "The Evolution of the Mexican-Born Workforce in the United States," NBER Chapters,in: Mexican Immigration to the United States, pages 13-56 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. 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..
    6. 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.
    7. Ottaviano, Gianmarco I.P. & Peri, Giovanni, 2008. "Immigration and National Wages: Clarifying the Theory and the Empirics," Knowledge, Technology, Human Capital Working Papers 44227, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM).
    8. Abdurrahman Aydemir & George J. Borjas, 2006. "A Comparative Analysis of the Labor Market Impact of International Migration: Canada, Mexico, and the United States," NBER Working Papers 12327, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. 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.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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