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Unemployment and Migration: Does Moving Help?

  • Sari Pekkala

This paper studies the migration behaviour of the unemployed in Finland, and analyses the causal effect of moving on individual employment status. In 1994 17 per cent of the labour force was unemployed and the unemployment rate exhibited a very slow decline in 1994-96. Over half of those who were unemployed at the end of 1994 were still unemployed two years later. The propensity to find a job is somewhat greater among migrants. However, the positive effect of moving diminishes once other personal characteristics are accounted for. Moreover, when endogenous migrant selectivity is controlled for, an insignificant or even a negative effect on employment status emerges. This indicates that the better "quality" of the migrants (e.g. age, education, human capital and unobserved ability), rather than the act of moving itself, causes an improvement in re-employability. Hence, migration alone may not be a very effective mechanism for alleviating individual unemployment.

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Paper provided by Government Institute for Economic Research Finland (VATT) in its series Discussion Papers with number 281.

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Date of creation: 04 Jul 2002
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Handle: RePEc:fer:dpaper:281
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  1. Faini, Riccardo & Galli, Giampaolo & Gennari, Pietro & Rossi, Fulvio, 1997. "An empirical puzzle: Falling migration and growing unemployment differentials among Italian regions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-5), pages 571-579, April.
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  8. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
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  10. Joshua Angrist, 1999. "Estimation of Limited-Dependent Variable Models with Dummy Endogenous Regressors: Simple Strategies for Empirical Practice," Working papers 99-31, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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  16. Ahn, Namkee & de la Rica, Sara & Ugidos, Arantza, 1999. "Willingness to Move for Work and Unemployment Duration in Spain," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 66(263), pages 335-57, August.
  17. Mincer, Jacob, 1978. "Family Migration Decisions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 749-73, October.
  18. Boehm, Thomas P. & Herzog, Jr., Henry W. & Schlottmann, Alan M., 1998. "Does Migration Matter? Job Search Outcomes for the Unemployed," The Review of Regional Studies, Southern Regional Science Association, vol. 28(1), pages 3-12, Summer.
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