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Earnings Assimilation of Immigrants in Germany: The Importance of Heterogeneity and Attrition Bias

  • Michael Fertig
  • Stefanie Schurer

Heterogeneity in the ethnic composition of Germany's immigrant population renders general conclusions on the degree of economic integration difficult. Using a rich longitudinal data-set, this paper tests for differences in economic assimilation profiles of four entry cohorts of foreign-born immigrants and ethnic Germans. The importance of time-invariant individual unobserved heterogeneity and panel attrition in determining the speed of assimilation is analysed. We find evidence for heterogeneity in the assimilation profiles and for robust assimilation profiles for two entry cohorts only. Omitted variables, systematic sample attrition and the presence of second generation immigrants in the sample influence the speed of assimilation, but do not change the overall picture.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.61960.de/diw_sp0030.pdf
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Paper provided by DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in its series SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research with number 30.

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Length: 39 p.
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp30
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  1. Dustmann, C, 1993. "Earnings Adjustment of Temporary Migrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 153-68, May.
  2. Halvorsen, Robert & Palmquist, Raymond, 1980. "The Interpretation of Dummy Variables in Semilogarithmic Equations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 474-75, June.
  3. Schmidt, Christoph M, 1993. "The Earnings Dynamics of Immigrant Labour," CEPR Discussion Papers 763, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Ira N. Gang & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2000. "Is Child like Parent? Educational Attainment and Ethnic Origin," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 35(3), pages 550-569.
  5. Constant, Amelie F. & Massey, Douglas S., 2003. "Labor Market Segmentation and the Earnings of German Guestworkers," IZA Discussion Papers 774, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Chiswick, Barry R. & Lee, Yew Liang & Miller, Paul W., 2002. "Longitudinal Analysis of Immigrant Occupational Mobility: A Test of the Immigrant Assimilation Hypothesis," IZA Discussion Papers 452, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1990. "Empirical Age-Earnings Profiles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 202-29, April.
  8. John Fitzgerald & Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 1998. "An Analysis of Sample Attrition in Panel Data: The Michigan Panel Study of Income Dynamics," NBER Technical Working Papers 0220, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Luis Ayala & Carolina Navarro & Mercedes Sastre, 2006. "Cross-Country Income Mobility Comparisons Under Panel Attrition: The Relevance of Weighting Schemes," Working Papers 47, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  10. Verbeek, M. & Nijman, T., 1990. "Testing For Selectivity Bias In Panel Data Models," Papers 9018, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  11. Bauer, Thomas & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 1997. "Unemployment and wages of ethnic Germans," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(Supplemen), pages 361-377.
  12. Francis Vella, 1998. "Estimating Models with Sample Selection Bias: A Survey," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(1), pages 127-169.
  13. Dustmann, Christian, 1994. "Speaking Fluency, Writing Fluency and Earnings of Migrants," CEPR Discussion Papers 905, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Erling Barth & Bernt Bratsberg & Oddbj¯rn Raaum, 2004. "Identifying Earnings Assimilation of Immigrants under Changing Macroeconomic Conditions," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(1), pages 1-22, 03.
  15. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
  16. Sean Becketti & William Gould & Lee Lillard & Finis Welch, 1985. "The Panel Study of Income Dynamics After Fourteen Years: An Evaluation," UCLA Economics Working Papers 361, UCLA Department of Economics.
  17. 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.
  18. Schmidt, Christoph M, 1994. "The Economic Performance of Germany's East European Immigrants," CEPR Discussion Papers 963, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Dustmann, C. & van Soest, A.H.O., 1998. "Language Fluency and Earnings : Estimation with Misclassified Language Indicators," Discussion Paper 1998-120, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  20. Dustmann, Christian, 2001. "Return Migration, Wage Differentials, and the Optimal Migration Duration," IZA Discussion Papers 264, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  21. Licht, Georg & Steiner, Viktor, 1993. "Assimilation, labour market experience, and earnings profiles of temporary and permanent immigrant workers in germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 93-06, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  22. Hausman, Jerry A & Wise, David A, 1979. "Attrition Bias in Experimental and Panel Data: The Gary Income Maintenance Experiment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 455-73, March.
  23. Lee A. Lillard & Constantijn W. A. Panis, 1998. "Panel Attrition from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics: Household Income, Marital Status, and Mortality," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(2), pages 437-457.
  24. Daniel H. Hill & Robert J. Willis, 2001. "Reducing Panel Attrition: A Search for Effective Policy Instruments," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(3), pages 416-438.
  25. Schmidt, Christoph M., 1997. "Immigrant performance in Germany: Labor earnings of ethnic German migrants and foreign guest-workers," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(Supplemen), pages 379-397.
  26. Nijman, T.E. & Verbeek, M.J.C.M., 1992. "Testing for selectivity in panel data models," Other publications TiSEM 7ec34a6c-1d84-4052-971c-d, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  27. Jeffrey E. Zabel, 1998. "An Analysis of Attrition in the Panel Study of Income Dynamics and the Survey of Income and Program Participation with an Application to a Model of Labor Market Behavior," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(2), pages 479-506.
  28. Carliner, Geoffrey, 1980. "Wages, Earnings and Hours of First, Second, and Third Generation American Males," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(1), pages 87-102, January.
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