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Wealth and Asset Holdings of Immigrants in Germany

  • Mathias Sinning


This paper examines the relative wealth position and the portfolio choices of immigrants in Germany. The empirical findings reveal significant differences in overall wealth and various wealth components between German natives and immigrants. Differences in real estate constitute the major part of different levels of net worth, indicating that disparities in home-ownership rates are responsible for the main part of the overall wealth gap. Moreover, migrants’ degree of portfolio diversification is significantly lower than that of comparable natives. The results of a decomposition analysis suggest that diffrences in wealth and asset holdings may be explained by disparity in educational attainment to a sizable extent, while the effects of income differentials and differences in demographic characteristics are insignificant.

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Paper provided by Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen in its series Ruhr Economic Papers with number 0030.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0030
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  1. Thomas Dohmen & Armin Falk & David Huffman & Uwe Sunde, 2008. "The Intergenerational Transmission of Risk and Trust Attitudes," CESifo Working Paper Series 2307, CESifo Group Munich.
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  3. Djajic, Slobodan, 1989. "Migrants in a guest-worker system : A utility maximizing approach," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 327-339, October.
  4. Deborah Cobb-Clark & Vincent A. Hildebrand, 2006. "The Wealth of Mexican Americans," CEPR Discussion Papers 519, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
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  6. Sinning, Mathias, 2007. "Determinants of Savings and Remittances – Empirical Evidence from Immigrants to Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 23, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (RWI), Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
  7. George J. Borjas, 1994. "The Economics of Immigration," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1667-1717, December.
  8. 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.
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  11. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Susan Pozo, 2002. "Precautionary Saving by Young Immigrants and Young Natives," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 69(1), pages 48-71, July.
  12. Deborah A. Cobb-Clark & Vincent Hildebrand, 2003. "The Wealth and Asset Holdings of U.S.-Born and Foreign-Born Households: Evidence from SIPP Data," Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers 89, McMaster University.
  13. Iftekhar Hasan & Anthony Saunders & Viral V. Acharya, 2002. "Should banks be diversified? Evidence from individual bank loan portfolios," BIS Working Papers 118, Bank for International Settlements.
  14. Bauer, Thomas K. & Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. & Hildebrand, Vincent A. & Sinning, Mathias, 2007. "A Comparative Analysis of the Nativity Wealth Gap," Ruhr Economic Papers 6, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (RWI), Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
  15. Deborah A. Cobb-Clark & Steve Stillman, 2006. "The Retirement Expectations of Middle-Aged Individuals," CEPR Discussion Papers 540, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  16. John Gibson & Trinh Le & Steven Stillman, 2007. "What Explains the Wealth Gap between Immigrants and the New Zealand Born?," Working Papers in Economics 07/02, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
  17. de Coulon, Augustin & Wolff, François-Charles, 2006. "The Location of Immigrants at Retirement: Stay/Return or ‘Va-et-Vient’?," IZA Discussion Papers 2224, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  24. repec:rwi:repape:0006 is not listed on IDEAS
  25. Maury Gittleman & Edward N. Wolff, 2004. "Racial Differences in Patterns of Wealth Accumulation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(1).
  26. Barsky R. & Bound J. & Charles K.K. & Lupton J.P., 2002. "Accounting for the Black-White Wealth Gap: A Nonparametric Approach," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 97, pages 663-673, September.
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