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Heterogeneous Firms and Imperfect Substitution: The Productivity Effect of Migrants

Author

Listed:
  • Anette Haas
  • Michael Lucht

    () (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB))

Abstract

To examine the impact of migrants on the average firm productivity, wages and welfare we construct a general equilibrium model with monopolistic competition a la Melitz (2003) considering heterogeneous firms with different productivity levels and imperfect substitutability between migrants and natives. This gives rise to wage differences between natives and migrants. As a consequence firms with a higher share of migrants realize wage cost advantages. The heterogeneous distribution of migrants in our model might foster regional disparities. In the long run equilibrium it depends on the migrant share, which kind of firms survive in the market. Above a certain migrant share only those firms stay in the market which are highly productive or are able to compensate a lower productivity level by wage cost advantages. By modeling this process, we show that a higher migrant share may explain a higher average productivity in a region. Though the relative wages of natives to migrants increase in the migrant share, in contrast the welfare effects for natives are ambiguous: it might be the case that in a region with a higher migrant share the welfare of a native can be lower compared to a worker in a region of the same size with lower migrant share.

Suggested Citation

  • Anette Haas & Michael Lucht, 2013. "Heterogeneous Firms and Imperfect Substitution: The Productivity Effect of Migrants," Norface Discussion Paper Series 2013019, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.
  • Handle: RePEc:nor:wpaper:2013019
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martins, Pedro S. & Piracha, Matloob & Varejão, José, 2012. "Do Immigrants Displace Native Workers? Evidence from Matched Panel Data," IZA Discussion Papers 6644, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    7. Giovanni Peri, 2012. "The Effect Of Immigration On Productivity: Evidence From U.S. States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 348-358, February.
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    10. repec:eee:ecmode:v:72:y:2018:i:c:p:216-222 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2012. "The effects of immigration on US wages and rents: a general equilibrium approach," Chapters,in: Migration Impact Assessment, chapter 3, pages 107-146 Edward Elgar Publishing.
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    Cited by:

    1. Mitaritonna, Cristina & Orefice, Gianluca & Peri, Giovanni, 2014. "Immigrants and Firms' Productivity: Evidence from France," IZA Discussion Papers 8063, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Brixy, Udo & Brunow, Stephan & D''Ambrosio, Anna, 2017. "Ethnic diversity in start-ups and its impact on innovation," IAB Discussion Paper 201725, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    3. Peter Nijkamp & Jacques Poot, 2015. "Cultural Diversity - A Matter of Measurement," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1502, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    immigration; firm heterogeneity; skills; tasks; regional labor markets;

    JEL classification:

    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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