IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/18298.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Have the Poor Always Been Less Likely to Migrate? Evidence From Inheritance Practices During the Age of Mass Migration

Author

Listed:
  • Ran Abramitzky
  • Leah Platt Boustan
  • Katherine Eriksson

Abstract

Using novel data on 50,000 Norwegian men, we study the effect of wealth on the probability of internal or international migration during the Age of Mass Migration (1850-1913), a time when the US maintained an open border to European immigrants. We do so by exploiting variation in parental wealth and in expected inheritance by birth order, gender composition of siblings, and region. We find that wealth discouraged migration in this era, suggesting that the poor could be more likely to move if migration restrictions were lifted today. We discuss the implications of these historical findings to developing countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Ran Abramitzky & Leah Platt Boustan & Katherine Eriksson, 2012. "Have the Poor Always Been Less Likely to Migrate? Evidence From Inheritance Practices During the Age of Mass Migration," NBER Working Papers 18298, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18298
    Note: DAE LS
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w18298.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Alison Booth & Hiau Kee, 2009. "Birth order matters: the effect of family size and birth order on educational attainment," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 22(2), pages 367-397, April.
    2. Ran Abramitzky & Leah Platt Boustan & Katherine Eriksson, 2012. "Europe's Tired, Poor, Huddled Masses: Self-Selection and Economic Outcomes in the Age of Mass Migration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 1832-1856, August.
    3. Cynthia Feliciano, 2005. "Educational selectivity in U.S. Immigration: How do immigrants compare to those left behind?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 42(1), pages 131-152, February.
    4. Sandra E. Black & Paul J. Devereux & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2005. "The More the Merrier? The Effect of Family Size and Birth Order on Children's Education," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(2), pages 669-700.
    5. Jesúús Fernández-Huertas Moraga, 2011. "New Evidence on Emigrant Selection," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(1), pages 72-96, February.
    6. Gordon H. Hanson, 2010. "Why Isn't Mexico Rich?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(4), pages 987-1004, December.
    7. Dean Yang, 2011. "Migrant Remittances," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 25(3), pages 129-152, Summer.
    8. Larry A. Sjaastad, 1962. "The Costs and Returns of Human Migration," NBER Chapters, in: Investment in Human Beings, pages 80-93, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Dean Yang, 2008. "International Migration, Remittances and Household Investment: Evidence from Philippine Migrants’ Exchange Rate Shocks," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(528), pages 591-630, April.
    10. Stark, Oded & Bloom, David E, 1985. "The New Economics of Labor Migration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(2), pages 173-178, May.
    11. Chiswick, Barry R, 1978. "The Effect of Americanization on the Earnings of Foreign-born Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 897-921, October.
    12. Rapoport, Hillel & Docquier, Frederic, 2006. "The Economics of Migrants' Remittances," Handbook on the Economics of Giving, Reciprocity and Altruism, in: S. Kolm & Jean Mercier Ythier (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Giving, Altruism and Reciprocity, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 17, pages 1135-1198, Elsevier.
    13. Gordon H. Hanson, 2006. "Illegal Migration from Mexico to the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(4), pages 869-924, December.
    14. Eric Edmonds, 2006. "Understanding sibling differences in child labor," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 19(4), pages 795-821, October.
    15. Pablo Ibarraran & Darren Lubotsky, 2007. "Mexican Immigration and Self-Selection: New Evidence from the 2000 Mexican Census," NBER Chapters, in: Mexican Immigration to the United States, pages 159-192, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Mishra, Prachi, 2007. "Emigration and wages in source countries: Evidence from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 180-199, January.
    17. Mckenzie, David & Rapoport, Hillel, 2007. "Network effects and the dynamics of migration and inequality: Theory and evidence from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 1-24, September.
    18. George Psacharopoulos & Harry Anthony Patrinos, 1997. "Family size, schooling and child labor in Peru - An empirical analysis," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 10(4), pages 387-405.
    19. Borjas, George J, 1987. "Self-Selection and the Earnings of Immigrants," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 531-553, September.
    20. Hatton, Timothy J. & Williamson, Jeffrey G., 1998. "The Age of Mass Migration: Causes and Economic Impact," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195116519.
    21. David McKenzie & Hillel Rapoport, 2010. "Self-Selection Patterns in Mexico-U.S. Migration: The Role of Migration Networks," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(4), pages 811-821, November.
    22. A'Hearn, Brian & Baten, Jörg & Crayen, Dorothee, 2009. "Quantifying Quantitative Literacy: Age Heaping and the History of Human Capital," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 69(3), pages 783-808, September.
    23. Grogger, Jeffrey & Hanson, Gordon H., 2011. "Income maximization and the selection and sorting of international migrants," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 42-57, May.
    24. Jorge Durand & William Kandel & Emilio Parrado & Douglas Massey, 1996. "International migration and development in mexican communities," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 33(2), pages 249-264, May.
    25. Mette Ejrnæs & Claus C. Pörtner, 2004. "Birth Order and the Intrahousehold Allocation of Time and Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(4), pages 1008-1019, November.
    26. Woodruff, Christopher & Zenteno, Rene, 2007. "Migration networks and microenterprises in Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 509-528, March.
    27. Guinnane, Timothy W., 1992. "Intergenerational transfers, emigration, and the rural Irish household system," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 456-476, October.
    28. Kaivan Munshi & Mark R. Rosenzweig, 2005. "Why is Mobility in India so Low? Social Insurance, Inequality, and Growth," CID Working Papers 121, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
    29. Walter F. Willcox, 1929. "International Migrations, Volume I: Statistics," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number fere29-1, May.
    30. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Stark, Oded, 1989. "Consumption Smoothing, Migration, and Marriage: Evidence from Rural India," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 905-926, August.
    31. Alejandra Cox Edwards & Manuelita Ureta, 2003. "International Migration, Remittances, and Schooling: Evidence from El Salvador," NBER Working Papers 9766, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    32. Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2005. "International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 239-281, April.
    33. Kristin F. Butcher & Anne Case, 1994. "The Effect of Sibling Sex Composition on Women's Education and Earnings," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(3), pages 531-563.
    34. Joseph Price, 2008. "Parent-Child Quality Time: Does Birth Order Matter?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
    35. Wegge, Simone A., 1999. "To Part or Not to Part: Emigration and Inheritance Institutions in Nineteenth-Century Hesse-Cassel," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 30-55, January.
    36. Long, Jason, 2005. "Rural-Urban Migration and Socioeconomic Mobility in Victorian Britain," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 65(1), pages 1-35, March.
    37. Wegge, Simone A., 1998. "Chain Migration and Information Networks: Evidence From Nineteenth-Century Hesse-Cassel," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 58(4), pages 957-986, December.
    38. Michael A. Clemens, 2011. "Economics and Emigration: Trillion-Dollar Bills on the Sidewalk?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 25(3), pages 83-106, Summer.
    39. Hoyt Bleakley, 2007. "Disease and Development: Evidence from Hookworm Eradication in the American South," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(1), pages 73-117.
    40. Osili, Una Okonkwo, 2007. "Remittances and savings from international migration: Theory and evidence using a matched sample," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 446-465, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Gröger, André, 2021. "Easy come, easy go? Economic shocks, labor migration and the family left behind," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(C).
    2. Spitzer, Yannay & Zimran, Ariell, 2018. "Migrant self-selection: Anthropometric evidence from the mass migration of Italians to the United States, 1907–1925," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 226-247.
    3. Fernández-Huertas Moraga, Jesús, 2013. "Understanding different migrant selection patterns in rural and urban Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 182-201.
    4. Hatton, Timothy J., 2014. "The economics of international migration: A short history of the debate," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 43-50.
    5. Gordon H. Hanson, 2006. "Illegal Migration from Mexico to the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(4), pages 869-924, December.
    6. Ran Abramitzky & Leah Platt Boustan & Katherine Eriksson, 2012. "Europe's Tired, Poor, Huddled Masses: Self-Selection and Economic Outcomes in the Age of Mass Migration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 1832-1856, August.
    7. Hanson, Gordon H., 2010. "International Migration and the Developing World," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Dani Rodrik & Mark Rosenzweig (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 4363-4414, Elsevier.
    8. Ran Abramitzky & Leah Boustan, 2017. "Immigration in American Economic History," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 55(4), pages 1311-1345, December.
    9. Jaschke, Philipp & Keita, Sekou, 2021. "Say it like Goethe: Language learning facilities abroad and the self-selection of immigrants," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 149(C).
    10. Alexander Patt & Jens Ruhose & Simon Wiederhold & Miguel Flores, 2017. "International Emigrant Selection on Occupational Skills," CESifo Working Paper Series 6527, CESifo.
    11. Biavaschi, Costanza, 2016. "Recovering the counterfactual wage distribution with selective return migration," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 59-80.
    12. Milo Bianchi, 2013. "Immigration Policy and Self-Selecting Migrants," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 15(1), pages 1-23, February.
    13. David Escamilla-Guerrero & Moramay Lopez-Alonso, 2020. "Migrant self-selection in the presence of random shocks. Evidence from the Panic of 1907," Oxford Economic and Social History Working Papers _179, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    14. Stolz, Yvonne & Baten, Joerg, 2012. "Brain drain in the age of mass migration: Does relative inequality explain migrant selectivity?," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 205-220.
    15. Valsecchi, Michele, 2014. "Land property rights and international migration: Evidence from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 276-290.
    16. Andrés Villarreal, 2016. "The Education-Occupation Mismatch of International and Internal Migrants in Mexico, 2005–2012," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 53(3), pages 865-883, June.
    17. Djajic, Slobodan & Kirdar, Murat G. & Vinogradova, Alexandra, 2016. "Source-country earnings and emigration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 46-67.
    18. Gordon Hanson & Chen Liu & Craig McIntosh, 2017. "The Rise and Fall of U.S. Low-Skilled Immigration," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 48(1 (Spring), pages 83-168.
    19. Christian Dustmann & Joseph-Simon Görlach, 2016. "The Economics of Temporary Migrations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 54(1), pages 98-136, March.
    20. Assunção, Juliano Junqueira & Carvalho, Leandro, 2013. "Financial Constraints, Endogenous Educational Choices and Self-Selection of Migrants," Brazilian Review of Econometrics, Sociedade Brasileira de Econometria - SBE, vol. 33(2), November.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18298. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.