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Immigrant Assimilation and Welfare Participation Do Immigrants Assimilate Into or Out of Welfare?

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  • Jorgen Hansen
  • Magnus Lofstrom

Abstract

This paper analyzes differences in welfare utilization between immigrants and natives in Sweden using a large panel data set for the years 1990 to 1996. We find that immigrants use welfare to a greater extent than natives and that differences cannot be explained by observable characteristics. Welfare participation decreases with time spent in Sweden. Refugees assimilate out of welfare at a faster rate than nonrefugee immigrants, but neither group is predicted to reach parity with natives. Increases in unemployment and immigration, as well as the change in the composition of immigrants, contributed to the increase in welfare utilization in Sweden.

Suggested Citation

  • Jorgen Hansen & Magnus Lofstrom, 2003. "Immigrant Assimilation and Welfare Participation Do Immigrants Assimilate Into or Out of Welfare?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(1).
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:38:y:2003:i:1:p74-98
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H53 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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