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On the Relative Gains to Immigration: A Comparison of the Labour Market Position of Indians in the USA, the UK and India

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  • Jonathan Wadsworth
  • Augustin de Coulon

Abstract

While most studies of the decision to immigrate focus on the absolute income differences between countries, we argue that relative change in purchasing power or status, as captured by an individual's ranking in the wage distribution, may also be important. This will in turn be influenced by differential levels of supply, demand and migration costs across the skill distribution and across countries. Using data on Indian immigrants in the United States and the UK matched to comparable data on individuals who remained in India, we show that the average Indian immigrant will experience a fall in their relative ranking in the wage distribution compared to the position they would have achieved had they remained in the origin country. The fall in relative rankings is larger for immigrants to the UK than to the US, and largest of all for those with intermediate skills.

Suggested Citation

  • Jonathan Wadsworth & Augustin de Coulon, 2008. "On the Relative Gains to Immigration: A Comparison of the Labour Market Position of Indians in the USA, the UK and India," CEP Discussion Papers dp0851, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0851
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Heather Antecol & Deborah A. Cobb-Clark & Stephen J. Trejo, 2003. "Immigration Policy and the Skills of Immigrants to Australia, Canada, and the United States," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(1).
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    Cited by:

    1. Yann Algan & Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Allan Manning, 2010. "The Economic Situation of First ans Second-Generation in France, Germany, and the United Kingdom," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/536kq4edtr8, Sciences Po.
    2. Yann Algan & Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Alan Manning, 2010. "The Economic Situation of First and Second-Generation Immigrants in France, Germany and the United Kingdom," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(542), pages 4-30, February.
    3. Anzelika Zaiceva & Klaus Zimmermann, 2014. "Children, Kitchen, Church: does ethnicity matter?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 83-103, March.
    4. Algan, Yann & Dustmann, Christian & Glitz, Albrecht & Manning, Alan, 2009. "The Economic Situation of First- and Second-Generation Immigrants in France, Germany, and the UK," IZA Discussion Papers 4514, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Ambrosini, J. William & Mayr, Karin & Peri, Giovanni & Radu, Dragos, 2012. "The Selection of Migrants and Returnees in Romania: Evidence and Long-Run Implications," IZA Discussion Papers 6664, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Koczan, Zs, 2013. "Does identity matter," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1313, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    7. J. William Ambrosini & Karin Mayr & Giovanni Peri & Dragos Radu, 2011. "The Selection of Migrants and Returnees: Evidence from Romania and Implications," NBER Working Papers 16912, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Simontini Das & Ajitava Raychaudhuri & Saikat Sinha Roy, 2012. "Immigration Versus Outsourcing: A Developing Country¡¯S View," Journal of Economic Development, Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 37(2), pages 109-138, June.
    9. Guanyi Yang, 2015. "The Effect of College Major on Labor Market Outcomes of Chinese Immigrants," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 6(4), pages 1138-1162, December.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    immigration; wages; relative ranking;

    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
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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