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Self-Selection, Immigrant Public Finance Performance and Canadian Citizenship

Author

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  • DeVoretz, Don J.

    () (Simon Fraser University)

  • Pivnenko, Sergiy

    () (Simon Fraser University)

Abstract

This paper consists of two parts focusing on the immigrant’s decision to acquire Canadian citizenship, and her subsequent performance as a taxpayer and recipient of public finance transfers. Our results support the view that selectivity bias appears in Canadian immigrant citizenship decisions and varies by immigrant gender and source country groups. Our Oaxaca decomposition results demonstrated the importance of the human capital endowment in explaining selectivity corrected citizenship-non-citizenship earnings differences. Next, we confirmed the standard results that the naturalization decision is conditioned by the expected wage gain, level of education, marital status, age and presence of children. At the macro level, our study focused on the implications of Canadian citizenship for the lifetime public finance contributions by naturalized immigrants. All immigrants, regardless of their source country group and citizenship status, made a positive contribution to Canada’s treasury circa 1996 over their life cycle. Naturalized citizens from OECD countries contributed the largest public finance transfers exceeding the corresponding value for the Canadian-born by more than $14,000. In addition, naturalized citizens made higher net contributions than their non-citizen counterparts regardless of source country. The relatively poor public finance performance of non-citizens was explained by their lifetime low income and low tax payments.

Suggested Citation

  • DeVoretz, Don J. & Pivnenko, Sergiy, 2005. "Self-Selection, Immigrant Public Finance Performance and Canadian Citizenship," IZA Discussion Papers 1463, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1463
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Chris Robinson & Nigel Tomes, 1982. "Self-Selection and Interprovincial Migration in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 15(3), pages 474-502, August.
    2. Ides Nicaise, 2001. "Human capital, reservation wages and job competition: Heckman's lambda re-interpreted," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(3), pages 309-315.
    3. Oaxaca, Ronald, 1973. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 14(3), pages 693-709, October.
    4. Bernt Bratsberg & James F. Ragan & Zafar M. Nasir, 2002. "The Effect of Naturalization on Wage Growth: A Panel Study of Young Male Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(3), pages 568-597, July.
    5. Neuman, Shoshana & Oaxaca, Ronald L, 1998. "Estimating Labour Market Discrimination with Selectivity Corrected Wage Equations: Methodological Considerations and an Illustration from Israel," CEPR Discussion Papers 1915, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Cotton, Jeremiah, 1988. "On the Decomposition of Wage Differentials," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(2), pages 236-243, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Steinhardt, Max Friedrich, 2012. "Does citizenship matter? The economic impact of naturalizations in Germany," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 813-823.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    immigration; public finance; Canada; citizenship;

    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration

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