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The Role of Income and Immigration Policies in Attracting International Migrants

  • Francesc Ortega
  • Giovanni Peri

    (Department of Economics, University of California Davis)

This paper makes two contributions to the literature on the determinants of international migration flows. First, we compile a new dataset on annual bilateral migration flows covering 15 OECD destination countries and 120 sending countries for the period 1980-2006. We also collect data on time-varying immigration policies that regulate the entry of immigrants for our destination countries over this period. Second, we extend the empirical model of migration choice across multiple destinations developed by Grogger and Hanson (2011) by allowing for unobserved individual heterogeneity between migrants and non-migrants. Our estimates show that international migration flows are highly responsive to income per capita at destination. This elasticity is twice as high for within-EU migration, reflecting the higher degree of labor mobility within the European Union. We also find that tightening of laws regulating immigrant entry reduce rapidly and significantly their flow.

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File URL: http://wp.econ.ucdavis.edu/12-14.pdf
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Paper provided by University of California, Davis, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1214.

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Length: 32
Date of creation: 07 Jun 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cda:wpaper:12-14
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  1. Francesc Ortega & Giovanni Peri, 2009. "The Causes and Effects of International Migrations: Evidence from OECD Countries 1980-2005," Working Papers 96, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  2. Simone Bertoli & Jesus Fernandez-Huertas Moraga & Francesc Ortega, 2011. "Immigration Policies and the Ecuadorian Exodus," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 25(1), pages 57-76, March.
  3. David Karemera & Victor Iwuagwu Oguledo & Bobby Davis, 2000. "A gravity model analysis of international migration to North America," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(13), pages 1745-1755.
  4. Hatton, Timothy J., 2010. "The Cliometrics of International Migration: A Survey," CEPR Discussion Papers 7803, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Facchini, Giovanni & Mayda, Anna Maria & Mishra, Prachi, 2008. "Do Interest Groups Affect US Immigration Policy?," CEPR Discussion Papers 6898, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Benhabib, Jess, 1996. "On the political economy of immigration," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(9), pages 1737-1743, December.
  7. Ortega, Francesc, 2009. "Immigration, Citizenship, and the Size of Government," IZA Discussion Papers 4528, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Graziella Bertocchi & Chiara Strozzi, 2006. "The Evolution of Citizenship: Economic and Institutional Determinants," Development Working Papers 211, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano.
  9. Rubinstein, Yona & Helpman, Elhanan & Melitz, Marc, 2008. "Estimating Trade Flows: Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," Scholarly Articles 3228230, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  10. Francesc Ortega & Javier G. Polavieja, 2009. "Labor-market exposure as a determinant of attitudes toward immigration," Working Papers 2009-14, Instituto Madrileño de Estudios Avanzados (IMDEA) Ciencias Sociales.
  11. McKenzie, David & Theoharides, Caroline & Yang, Dean, 2012. "Distortions in the International Migrant Labor Market: Evidence from Filipino Migration and Wage Responses to Destination Country Economic Shocks," IZA Discussion Papers 6498, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Susana Iranzo & Giovanni Peri, 2009. "Migration and Trade: Theory with an Application to the Eastern-Western European Integration," Working Papers 97, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  13. Gonzalez, Libertad & Ortega, Francesc, 2009. "Immigration and Housing Booms: Evidence from Spain," IZA Discussion Papers 4333, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Facchini, Giovanni & Steinhardt, Max F., 2011. "What Drives U.S. Immigration Policy? Evidence from Congressional Roll Call Votes," IZA Discussion Papers 5561, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  15. Bertoli, S. & Fernández-Huertas Moraga, J. & Ortega, F., 2013. "Crossing the border: Self-selection, earnings and individual migration decisions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 75-91.
  16. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer & John Ries, 2011. "The erosion of colonial trade linkages after independence," Post-Print hal-01024396, HAL.
  17. Chiswick, Barry R. & Hatton, Timothy J., 2002. "International Migration and the Integration of Labor Markets," IZA Discussion Papers 559, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  18. Jim Dolmas & Gregory W. Huffman, 2004. "On The Political Economy Of Immigration And Income Redistribution," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(4), pages 1129-1168, November.
  19. Julian di Giovanni & Andrei Levchenko & Francesc Ortega, 2012. "A Global View of Cross-Border Migration," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1218, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  20. Pilar García Gómez & Guillem López, 2003. "Hypothesis on immigration and welfare," Economics Working Papers 905, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Oct 2005.
  21. Bertoli, Simone & Fernández-Huertas Moraga, Jesús, 2011. "Multilateral Resistance to Migration," IZA Discussion Papers 5958, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  22. Borjas, George J, 1987. "Self-Selection and the Earnings of Immigrants," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 531-53, September.
  23. Graziella Bertocchi & Chiara Strozzi, 2008. "International Migration and the Role of Institutions," Center for Economic Research (RECent) 012, University of Modena and Reggio E., Dept. of Economics "Marco Biagi".
  24. Grogger, Jeffrey & Hanson, Gordon H., 2011. "Income maximization and the selection and sorting of international migrants," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 42-57, May.
  25. Hatton, Timothy J., 2005. "European Asylum Policy," IZA Discussion Papers 1721, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  26. E. Paul Durrenberger, 2005. "Labour," Chapters, in: A Handbook of Economic Anthropology, chapter 8 Edward Elgar Publishing.
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