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The Impact of Immigration on the Employment of Natives in Regional Labour Markets: A Meta-Analysis

  • Longhi, Simonetta

    ()

    (ISER, University of Essex)

  • Nijkamp, Peter

    ()

    (VU University Amsterdam)

  • Poot, Jacques

    ()

    (University of Waikato)

Immigration is a phenomenon of growing significance in many countries. Increasing social tensions are leading to political pressure to limit a further influx of foreign-born persons on the grounds that the absorption capacity of host countries has been exceeded and social cohesion threatened. There is also in public discourse a common perception of immigration resulting in economic costs, particularly with respect to wages and employment opportunities of the native born. This warrants a scientific assessment, using comparative applied research, of the empirical validity of the perception of a negative impact of immigration on labour market outcomes. We apply meta-analytic techniques to 165 estimates from 9 recent studies for various OECD countries and assess whether immigration leads to job displacement among native workers. The 'consensus estimate' of the decline in native-born employment following a 1 percent increase in the number of immigrants is a mere 0.024 percent. However, the impact is somewhat larger on female than on male employment. The negative employment effect is also greater in Europe than in the United States. Furthermore, the results are sensitive to the choice of the study design. For example, failure to control for endogeneity of immigration itself leads to an underestimate of its employment impact.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2044.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: J. Poot, B. Waldorf, and L. van Wissen (eds.), Migration and Human Capital, Edward Elgar, 2008
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2044
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  1. Jacques Poot, 2005. "Measuring the Economic Impact of Immigration: A Scoping Paper," Population Studies Centre Discussion Papers dp-48, University of Waikato, Population Studies Centre.
  2. George J. Borjas, 2006. "Native Internal Migration and the Labor Market Impact of Immigration," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 41(2).
  3. Simonetta Longhi & Peter Nijkamp & Jacques Poot, 2004. "A Meta-Analytic Assessment of the Effect of Immigration on Wages," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 04-134/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  4. Orley Ashenfelter & Colm Harmon & Hessel Oosterbeek, 1999. "A Review of Estimates of the Schooling/Earnings Relationship, with Tests for Publication Bias," Working Papers 804, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  5. Raquel Carrasco & Juan F. Jimeno & Ana Carolina Ortega, 2004. "The Effect Of Immigration On The Employment Opportunities Of Native-Born Workers: Some Evidence For Spain," Economics Working Papers we046122, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  6. George J. Borjas, 2003. "The Labor Demand Curve is Downward Sloping: Reexamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 9755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. David Card, 1997. "Immigrant Inflows, Native Outflows, and the Local Labor Market Impacts of Higher Immigration," NBER Working Papers 5927, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. repec:fda:fdaddt:2004-17 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Nijkamp, Peter & Poot, Jacques, 2004. "Meta-analysis of the effect of fiscal policies on long-run growth," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 91-124, March.
  10. David Card, 2004. "Is the New Immigration Really So Bad?," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0402, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  11. Colin J. Roberts, 2005. "Issues in Meta-Regression Analysis: An Overview," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 295-298, 07.
  12. E. Paul Durrenberger, 2005. "Labour," Chapters, in: A Handbook of Economic Anthropology, chapter 8 Edward Elgar.
  13. Rachel M. Friedberg & J. Hunt, 1995. "The Impact of Immigrants on Host Country Wages, Employment and Growth," Working Papers 95-5, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  14. Rachel M. Friedberg, 2001. "The Impact Of Mass Migration On The Israeli Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1373-1408, November.
  15. Joseph G. Altonji & David Card, 1989. "The Effects of Immigration on the Labor Market Outcomes of Natives," NBER Working Papers 3123, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Christian Dustmann & Francesca Fabbri & Ian Preston, 2005. "The Impact of Immigration on the UK Labour Market," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0501, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  17. Joshua D. Angrist & Adriana D. Kugler, 2003. "Protective or counter-productive? labour market institutions and the effect of immigration on eu natives," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(488), pages F302-F331, 06.
  18. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1995. "Time-Series Minimum-Wage Studies: A Meta-analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(2), pages 238-43, May.
  19. Borjas, George J., 1999. "The economic analysis of immigration," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 28, pages 1697-1760 Elsevier.
  20. Richard B. Freeman, 1982. "Crime and the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 1031, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. John M. Abowd & Richard B. Freeman, 1991. "Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number abow91-1.
  22. George J. Borjas & Richard B. Friedman & Lawrence F. Katz, 1997. "How Much Do Immigration and Trade Affect Labor Market Outcomes?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1), pages 1-90.
  23. Harry Coccossis & Peter Nijkamp, 2007. "Regional Science in Perspective," SCIENZE REGIONALI, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2007(2), pages 137-140.
  24. Jörn-Steffen Pischke & Johannes Velling, 1997. "Employment Effects Of Immigration To Germany: An Analysis Based On Local Labor Markets," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(4), pages 594-604, November.
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