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Immigration Policies and the Ecuadorian Exodus

  • Simone Bertoli

    ()

    (European University Institute)

  • Jesus Fernandez-Huertas Moraga

    ()

    (Institut d'Analisi Economica (Institute of Economics Analysis), Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (Higher Council of Scientific research))

  • Francesc Ortega

    (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)

Ecuador experienced an unprecedented wave of international migration since the late 1990s, triggered by a severe economic and financial crisis. This paper gathers individual-level data from Ecuador and the two main destinations of Ecuadorian migrants: the US and Spain. First, we provide a careful description of the main characteristics of migration flows, both in terms of their scale and skill composition. Second, we estimate Mincer regressions for Ecuadorians in the three countries, and attempt to reconcile the features of migration flows with our predictions for earnings by destination. We find that earnings differences can account for the higher share of college graduates among migrants to the US, but fail to explain the larger scale of the flows to Spain. We argue that the puzzle is explained by taking into account that (i) the options to migrate legally to either destination were slim, and (ii) the cost of illegally migrating to Spain was lower than to the US.

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Paper provided by Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London in its series CReAM Discussion Paper Series with number 1001.

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Date of creation: Feb 2010
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Handle: RePEc:crm:wpaper:1001
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  1. 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.
  2. David McKenzie & Hillel Rapoport, 2007. "Self-selection patterns in Mexico-U.S. migration: The role of migration networks," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0701, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  3. Francesc Ortega & Giovanni Peri, 2009. "The Causes and Effects of International Migrations: Evidence from OECD Countries 1980-2005," NBER Working Papers 14833, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2005. "International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 239-281, April.
  5. Simone Bertoli, 2010. "Networks, Sorting and Self-selection of Ecuadorian Migrants," Development Working Papers 287, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 30 Apr 2010.
  6. Fabian Valencia & Luc Laeven, 2008. "Systemic Banking Crises; A New Database," IMF Working Papers 08/224, International Monetary Fund.
  7. Andrew Atkeson & Varadarajan V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2010. "Sophisticated Monetary Policies," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 125(1), pages 47-89, February.
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