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The Dynamic Impact of Immigration on Natives' Labour Market Outcomes: Evidence from Israel

  • Cohen-Goldner, Sarit
  • Paserman, M. Daniele

This Paper studies the dynamic impact of mass migration from the Former Soviet Union to Israel on natives’ labour market outcomes. Specifically, we attempt to distinguish between the short-run and long-run effects of immigrants on natives’ wages and employment. The transition of immigrants into a new labour market is a gradual process: the dynamics of this process come from immigrants’ occupational mobility and from adjustments by local factors of production. Natives may therefore face changing labour market conditions, even years after the arrival of the immigrants. If immigrants are relatively good substitutes for native workers, we expect that the impact of immigration will be largest immediately upon the immigrants’ arrival, and may become smaller as the labor market adjusts to the supply shock. Conversely, if immigrants upon arrival are poor substitutes for natives because of their lack of local human capital, the initial effect of immigration is small, and the effect increases as immigrants acquire local labour market skills and compete with native workers. We empirically examine these alternative hypotheses using data from Israel’s Labor Force and Income Surveys from 1989 to 1999. We find that wages of both men and women are negatively correlated with the fraction of immigrants with little local experience in a given labour market segment. A 10% increase in the share of immigrants lowers natives’ wages in the short run by 1 to 3%, but this effect dissolves after 4 to 7 years. This result is robust to a variety of different segmentations of the labour market, to the inclusion of cohort effects, and to different dynamic structures in the residual term of the wage equation. On the other hand, we do not find any effect of immigration on employment, neither in the short nor in the long run.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4640.

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Date of creation: Sep 2004
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4640
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  1. Cohen-Goldner, Sarit & Paserman, M. Daniele, 2011. "The dynamic impact of immigration on natives' labor market outcomes: Evidence from Israel," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(8), pages 1027-1045.
  2. Friedberg, Rachel M, 2000. "You Can't Take It with You? Immigrant Assimilation and the Portability of Human Capital," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 221-51, April.
  3. Joseph G. Altonji & David Card, 1989. "The Effects of Immigration on the Labor Market Outcomes of Natives," NBER Working Papers 3123, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  10. Sarit Cohen-Goldner & M. Daniele Paserman, 2006. "Mass migration to Israel and natives' employment transitions," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 59(4), pages 630-652, July.
  11. Jörn-Steffen Pischke & Johannes Velling, 1997. "Employment Effects Of Immigration To Germany: An Analysis Based On Local Labor Markets," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(4), pages 594-604, November.
  12. Kugler, Adriana D. & Sauer, Robert M, 2003. "Doctors without Borders: The Returns to an Occupational License for Soviet Immigrant Physicians in Israel," CEPR Discussion Papers 3683, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Jennifer Hunt, 1992. "The Impact of the 1962 Repatriates from Algeria on the French Labor Market," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(3), pages 556-572, April.
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  16. Cohen-Goldner, Sarit & Eckstein, Zvi, 2010. "Estimating the return to training and occupational experience: The case of female immigrants," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 156(1), pages 86-105, May.
  17. Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2004. "How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(1), pages 249-275, February.
  18. David Card, 1996. "Immigrant Inflows, Native Outflows, and the Local Labor Market Impacts of Higher Immigration," Working Papers 747, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  19. David Card, 1989. "The Impact of the Mariel Boatlift on the Miami Labor Market," Working Papers 633, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  20. Jennifer Hunt, 1992. "The impact of the 1962 repatriates from Algeria on the French labor market," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(3), pages 556-572, April.
  21. Cohen-Goldner, Sarit & Paserman, M. Daniele, 2004. "Mass Migration to Israel and Natives' Transitions from Employment," CEPR Discussion Papers 4629, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  22. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  23. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-89, October.
  24. Christian Dustmann & Francesca Fabbri & Ian Preston, 2005. "The Impact of Immigration on the British Labour Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(507), pages F324-F341, November.
  25. George J. Borjas, 2003. "The Labor Demand Curve is Downward Sloping: Reexamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 9755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Joseph Altonji & David Card, 1989. "The Effects of Immigration on the Labor Market Outcome of Less-Skilled Natives," Working Papers 636, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  27. Borjas, George J., 1999. "The economic analysis of immigration," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 28, pages 1697-1760 Elsevier.
  28. Rachel M. Friedberg, 2001. "The Impact Of Mass Migration On The Israeli Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1373-1408, November.
  29. William J. Carrington & Pedro J. F. De Lima, 1996. "The Impact of 1970s Repatriates from Africa on the Portuguese Labor Market," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 49(2), pages 330-347, January.
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