Intergenerational Progress of Mexican-Origin Workers in the U.S. Labor Market
Using unique Current Population Survey data from November 1979 and 1989, this paper compares the wage structure across generations of Mexican-origin men. I find that the sizable earnings advantage U.S.-born Mexican Americans enjoy over Mexican immigrants arises not just from intergenerational improvements in years of schooling and English proficiency, but also from increased returns to human capital for Mexicanorigin workers who were born and educated in the United States. Progress stalls after the second generation, however, as the modest gains in human capital that occur between the second and third generations fail to raise the average earnings of Mexican Americans.
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