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Dual-earner migration in Britain: earnings gains, employment, and self-selection


  • Rabe, Birgitta


This paper examines how spouses in dual-earner couples in Britain weigh each partner's expected wage growth in the decision to migrate. Previous research suggests that husbands' job prospects dominate the migration choice irrespective of their relative earnings potential. Based on British panel data this paper employs an endogenous switching model and estimates wage change differentials of migrating vs. staying for husbands and wives corrected for double selectivity of migration and employment. The analysis shows that dual-earner couples put roughly equal weights on each partner's expected wage gains when deciding to migrate. Moreover, migrant wives' employment declines temporarily and there are significant selection effects in migration and employment among non-migrants.

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  • Rabe, Birgitta, 2006. "Dual-earner migration in Britain: earnings gains, employment, and self-selection," ISER Working Paper Series 2006-01, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:ese:iserwp:2006-01

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    1. Vijverberg, Wim P M, 1995. "Dual Selection Criteria with Multiple Alternatives: Migration, Work Status, and Wages," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(1), pages 159-185, February.
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    6. Mincer, Jacob, 1978. "Family Migration Decisions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 749-773, October.
    7. Sandell, Steven H, 1977. "Women and the Economics of Family Migration," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 59(4), pages 406-414, November.
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    9. Jacobsen, Joyce P. & Levin, Laurence M., 2000. "The effects of internal migration on the relative economic status of women and men," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 291-304, May.
    10. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    11. Boheim, Rene & Taylor, Mark P., 2007. "From the dark end of the street to the bright side of the road? The wage returns to migration in Britain," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 99-117, January.
    12. Fishe, Raymond P. H. & Trost, R. P. & Lurie, Philip M., 1981. "Labor force earnings and college choice of young women: An examination of selectivity bias and comparative advantage," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 169-191, April.
    13. Shelly Lundberg & Robert Pollak, 2003. "Efficiency in Marriage," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 1(3), pages 153-167, September.
    14. Jeffrey J. Yankow, 2003. "Migration, Job Change, and Wage Growth: A New Perspective on the Pecuniary Return to Geographic Mobility," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(3), pages 483-516.
    15. Lorenzo Cappellari & Stephen P. Jenkins, 2003. "Multivariate probit regression using simulated maximum likelihood," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 3(3), pages 278-294, September.
    16. Tunali, Insan, 2000. "Rationality of Migration," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 41(4), pages 893-920, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Martyn Andrews & Ken Clark & William Whittaker, 2011. "The determinants of regional migration in Great Britain: a duration approach," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 174(1), pages 127-153, January.
    2. Birgitta Rabe & Mark P. Taylor, 2012. "Differences in Opportunities? Wage, Employment and House-Price Effects on Migration," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 74(6), pages 831-855, December.
    3. Sigaud, Thomas, 2014. "Mobilités résidentielles et professionnelles des salariés en France : entreprises, marchés et territoires, une articulation en tension," Economics Thesis from University Paris Dauphine, Paris Dauphine University, number 123456789/14064 edited by Kirat, Thierry & Cusin, François, March.
    4. Terra Mckinnish, 2008. "Spousal Mobility and Earnings," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 45(4), pages 829-849, November.
    5. Nicoletti, Cheti, 2008. "Multiple sample selection in the estimation of intergenerational occupational mobility," ISER Working Paper Series 2008-20, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    6. Katarzyna Budnik, 2011. "Emigration Triggers: International Migration of Polish Workers between 1994 and 2009," NBP Working Papers 90, Narodowy Bank Polski, Economic Research Department.
    7. Blackburn, McKinley L., 2006. "The impact of internal migration on married couples' earnings in Britain, with a comparison to the United States," ISER Working Paper Series 2006-24, Institute for Social and Economic Research.

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