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Labour Market Outcomes of Immigrants in Germany: The Importance of Heterogeneity and Attrition Bias

  • Fertig, Michael


    (ISG, Cologne)

  • Schurer, Stefanie


    (University of Sydney)

Heterogeneity in the ethnic composition of Germany's immigrant population renders general conclusions on the degree of economic integration difficult. Using a rich longitudinal data-set, this paper tests for differences in economic assimilation profiles of four groups of foreign-born immigrants and ethnic Germans. The importance of time-invariant individual unobserved heterogeneity and panel attrition in determining the speed of assimilation is analysed. We find evidence for heterogeneity in the assimilation profiles for both annual earnings and unemployment probabilities. Robust assimilation profiles are found for two cohorts only. Omitted variables, systematic sample attrition and the presence of second generation immigrants in the sample influence the speed of assimilation, but do not change the overall picture.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2915.

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Length: 52 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2915
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  1. John Fitzgerald & Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 1997. "An Analysis of Sample Attrition in Panel Data: The Michigan Panel Study of Income Dynamics," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 394, Boston College Department of Economics.
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  5. Dustmann, Christian, 1994. "Speaking Fluency, Writing Fluency and Earnings of Migrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 133-56.
  6. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-89, October.
  7. Uhlendorff, Arne & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 2006. "Unemployment Dynamics among Migrants and Natives," CEPR Discussion Papers 5872, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Dustmann, C, 1993. "Earnings Adjustment of Temporary Migrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 153-68, May.
  9. Maude Toussaint-Comeau, 2004. "The occupational assimilation of Hispanics in the U.S.: evidence from panel data," Working Paper Series WP-04-15, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  10. Muhleisen, Martin & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 1994. "A panel analysis of job changes and unemployment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 793-801, April.
  11. Ira N. Gang & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 1999. "Is Child Like Parent? Educational Attainment and Ethnic Origin," Departmental Working Papers 199614, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  12. Barry R. Chiswick & Yew Liang Lee & Paul W. Miller, 2002. "Longitudinal Analysis of Immigrant Occupational Mobility: A Test of the Immigrant Assimilation Hypothesis," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 02-08, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
  13. Lee A. Lillard & Constantijn W. A. Panis, 1998. "Panel Attrition from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics: Household Income, Marital Status, and Mortality," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(2), pages 437-457.
  14. Verbeek, Marno & Nijman, Theo, 1992. "Testing for Selectivity Bias in Panel Data Models," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 33(3), pages 681-703, August.
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  16. repec:oup:restud:v:47:y:1980:i:1:p:225-38 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1990. "Empirical Age-Earnings Profiles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 202-29, April.
  18. Christian Dustmann & Arthur van Soest, 2001. "Language Fluency And Earnings: Estimation With Misclassified Language Indicators," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(4), pages 663-674, November.
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  22. Francis Vella, 1998. "Estimating Models with Sample Selection Bias: A Survey," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(1), pages 127-169.
  23. James P. Ziliak & Thomas J. Kniesner, 1998. "The Importance of Sample Attrition in Life Cycle Labor Supply Estimation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(2), pages 507-530.
  24. Mark C. Regets & Harriet Orcutt Duleep, 1999. "Immigrants and Human-Capital Investment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 186-191, May.
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  26. Schmidt, Christoph M, 1993. "The Earnings Dynamics of Immigrant Labour," CEPR Discussion Papers 763, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  27. Schmidt, Christoph M., 1997. "Immigrant performance in Germany: Labor earnings of ethnic German migrants and foreign guest-workers," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(Supplemen), pages 379-397.
  28. Pischke, Jörn-Steffen, 1992. "Assimilation and the earnings of guestworkers in Germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 92-17, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  29. George J. Borjas, 1994. "The Economics of Immigration," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1667-1717, December.
  30. Daniel H. Hill & Robert J. Willis, 2001. "Reducing Panel Attrition: A Search for Effective Policy Instruments," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(3), pages 416-438.
  31. Constant, Amelie F. & Massey, Douglas S., 2003. "Labor Market Segmentation and the Earnings of German Guestworkers," IZA Discussion Papers 774, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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