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Do Foreigners Replace Native Immigrants? Evidence from a Panel Cointegration Analysis


  • Brücker, Herbert

    () (Institute for Employment Research (IAB), Nuremberg)

  • Fachin, Stefano

    () (Sapienza University of Rome)

  • Venturini, Alessandra

    () (University of Turin)


This paper examines the impact of the immigration of foreigners on domestic labour mobility. Since David Card's seminal study on the regional labour market impact of the Mariel Boatlift it is controversial whether domestic labour mobility equilibrates economic conditions across cities and regions. However, there is little or no evidence that natives leave destinations where migrants tend to cluster. In this paper we reconcile the existing evidence by taking another route. We analyze whether the immigration of foreigners replaces domestic mobility from poor to rich regions. We focus on Italy, which is characterized by market differences in earnings between the North and the South. Based on a panel cointegration approach we exploit the variance of international and internal migration over time for identifying potential displacement effects. The main finding is that, conditional on unemployment and wage differentials, the share of foreign workers in the labour force of the destination regions discourages internal labour mobility significantly. As a consequence, spatial correlation studies which use the variance of the foreigner share across region for identifying the wage and employment effects of immigration, tend to understate the actual immigration impact.

Suggested Citation

  • Brücker, Herbert & Fachin, Stefano & Venturini, Alessandra, 2009. "Do Foreigners Replace Native Immigrants? Evidence from a Panel Cointegration Analysis," IZA Discussion Papers 4438, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4438

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. David Card, 2005. "Is the New Immigration Really so Bad?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(507), pages 300-323, November.
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    8. Ximena Clark & Timothy J. Hatton & Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2002. "Where Do U.S. Immigrants Come From, and Why?," NBER Working Papers 8998, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Peter Pedroni, 2000. "Fully Modified OLS for Heterogeneous Cointegrated Panels," Department of Economics Working Papers 2000-03, Department of Economics, Williams College.
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    12. Ottaviano, Gianmarco & Peri, Giovanni, 2005. "Rethinking the Gains from Immigration: Theory and Evidence from the US," CEPR Discussion Papers 5226, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. Stefano Fachin, 2007. "Long-run trends in internal migrations in italy: a study in panel cointegration with dependent units," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 401-428.
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    Cited by:

    1. Peter Huber & Gabriele Tondl, 2012. "Migration and regional convergence in the European Union," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 439-460, November.
    2. Sona Kalantaryan, 2013. "Housing Market Responses to Immigration; Evidence from Italy," RSCAS Working Papers 2013/83, European University Institute.
    3. Mocetti, Sauro & Porello, Carmine, 2010. "How does immigration affect native internal mobility? New evidence from Italy," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 427-439, November.
    4. Alessandra Venturini, 2012. "Methodological Aspects of Research on Flows Human Capital Flows: A survey," RSCAS Working Papers carim2012/01, European University Institute.
    5. Strom, Steinar & Venturini, Alessandra & Villosio, Claudia, 2013. "Wage Assimilation: Migrants versus Natives and Foreign Migrants versus Internal Migrants," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201341, University of Turin.
    6. Faini, Riccardo & Strom, Steinar & Venturini, Alessandra & Villosio, Claudia, 2009. "Are Foreign Migrants More Assimilated Than Native Ones?," IZA Discussion Papers 4639, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Francesca Di Iorio & Stefano Fachin, 2011. "A sieve bootstrap range test for poolability in dependent cointegrated panels," DSS Empirical Economics and Econometrics Working Papers Series 2011/2, Centre for Empirical Economics and Econometrics, Department of Statistics, "Sapienza" University of Rome.

    More about this item


    international migration; domestic migration; labour markets; panel cointegration; Italy;

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration

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