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Language Fluency And Earnings: Estimation With Misclassified Language Indicators

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  • Christian Dustmann
  • Arthur van Soest

Abstract

We use panel data to analyze the determinants of speaking fluency and wages of immigrants. Our model takes account of two problems that may bias OLS estimates of the impact of speaking fluency on earnings. First, subjective variables on an ordinal discrete scale, such as self-reported language ability, can suffer from misclassification errors. The model decomposes misclassification errors into a time-persistent and a time-varying component. Second, the model accounts for correlated unobserved heterogeneity in language and earnings equation. The main finding is that these two generalizations of the standard model both lead to substantial changes in the estimated effect of speaking fluency on earnings. © 2001 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Suggested Citation

  • Christian Dustmann & Arthur van Soest, 2001. "Language Fluency And Earnings: Estimation With Misclassified Language Indicators," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(4), pages 663-674, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:83:y:2001:i:4:p:663-674
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    5. Dustmann, Christian, 1994. "Speaking Fluency, Writing Fluency and Earnings of Migrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 7(2), pages 133-156.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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