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Native-Immigrant Wage Differentials in Germany - Assimilation, Discrimination, or Human Capital?

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Abstract

This study uses the concept of stochastic frontiers for analyzing the income disparity between ethnic groups in West Germany. Estimation of a potential rather than an average earnings function increases the explanatory power of the human capital approach and allows for detecting discrimination as well as assimilation processes. The empirical results im-ply that the human capital gap explains more than 75% of the wage differential between natives and foreign nationalities in Germany. As for ethnic Germans migrants, their wage disparity can be explained by 50% with human capital differentials. Surprisingly, only small differences could be observed with regard to the question of earnings efficiency. On an average, inhabitants as well as immigrants transformed about 85% to 90% of their potential income into actual earnings. The sources for the individually diverging efficiency ratios are not well understood, with discrimination only found for ethnic Germans from Eastern Europe. Somewhat disappointing, the assimilation hypothesis was clearly rejected for all migrants with again the exception being ethnic Germans from Eastern Europe.

Suggested Citation

  • Guenter Lang, 2000. "Native-Immigrant Wage Differentials in Germany - Assimilation, Discrimination, or Human Capital?," Discussion Paper Series 197, Universitaet Augsburg, Institute for Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:aug:augsbe:0197
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    File URL: http://www.wiwi.uni-augsburg.de/vwl/institut/paper/197.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Leilanie Basilio & Thomas K. Bauer & Anica Kramer, 2017. "Transferability of Human Capital and Immigrant Assimilation: An Analysis for Germany," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 31(3), pages 245-264, September.
    2. repec:taf:applec:v:49:y:2017:i:17:p:1732-1736 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Teodora Paligorova & Lubomira Anastassova, 2005. "Why Immigrants Manage to Grab More Social Benefits? Empirical Cross - Country Analysis," LIS Working papers 411, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    4. Teodora Paligorova & Lubomira Anastassova, 2006. "What is Behind Native-Immigrant Social Income Gaps?," LIS Working papers 432, LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg.
    5. Usamah Fayez Al-Farhan, 2010. "Changes in the Gender Wage Gap in Germany during a Period of Rising Wage Inequality 1999-2006: Was it Discrimination in the Returns to Human Capital?," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 293, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    6. Christensen, Björn, 2002. "Reservation wages, offered wages, and unemployment duration: new empirical evidence," Kiel Working Papers 1095, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    7. DeVoretz, Don J., 2004. "Immigration Policy: Methods of Economic Assessment," IZA Discussion Papers 1217, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Michael Chletsos & Stelios Roupakias, 2017. "Native-immigrant wage differentials in Greece: discrimination and assimilation," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(17), pages 1732-1736, April.
    9. Lubomira Anastassova & Teodora Paligorova, 2005. "Why Immigrants Manage to Grab More SocialBenefits? Empirical Cross - Country Analysis," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp263, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • 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
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing

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