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Immigrant earnings profiles in the presence of human capital investment: measuring cohort and macro effects

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  • David A. Green

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University of British Colombia)

  • Christopher Worswick

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

Abstract

Considering immigrant earnings in the context of post-arrival human capital investment implies: cohort quality should be defined in terms of the present value of the whole earnings profile; and, an appropriate definition of macro effects is obtained using the earnings profile of the native born cohort entering the labour market at the same time as an immigrant cohort. We illustrate this using Canadian immigrant earnings, where there were large cross-cohort earnings declines in the 1980s and 1990s. We find that changes affecting all new entrants play an important role in understanding immigrant earnings. In contrast, earlier approaches imply that macro events explain little of immigrant earnings patterns.

Suggested Citation

  • David A. Green & Christopher Worswick, 2004. "Immigrant earnings profiles in the presence of human capital investment: measuring cohort and macro effects," IFS Working Papers W04/13, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:04/13
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    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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