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Firm Dynamics and Immigration: The Case of High-Skilled Immigration

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  • Michael E. Waugh
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    This paper shows how the dynamics of the firm yield new insights into the short- and long-run economic outcomes from changes in immigration policy. I quantitatively illustrate these insights by evaluating two policies: an expansion of and the elimination of the H-1B visa program for skilled labor. A change in policy changes firms’ entry and exit decisions as they dynamically respond to changes in market size. The dynamic response of firms amplifies changes in relative wages as labor demand shifts with the distribution of firms. Firms’ responses also lead to the rapid accrual of aggregate gains/losses in output and consumption. The welfare implications of policy changes depend critically on who bears the burden of creating new firms.

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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w23387.pdf
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    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 23387.

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    Date of creation: May 2017
    Publication status: Forthcoming: Firm Dynamics and Immigration: The Case of High-Skilled Immigration , Michael E. Waugh. in High-Skilled Migration to the United States and its Economic Consequences , Hanson, Kerr, and Turner. 2017
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:23387
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    1. Schank, Thorsten & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2007. "Do exporters really pay higher wages? First evidence from German linked employer-employee data," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 52-74, May.
    2. 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.
    3. George J. Borjas, 2003. "The Labor Demand Curve is Downward Sloping: Reexamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(4), pages 1335-1374.
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