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The Rise in Low-income Rates Among Immigrants in Canada

Listed author(s):
  • Hou, Feng
  • Picot, Garnett
Registered author(s):

    This study uses census data to focus on low-income among immigrants, and asks a number of questions: (1) have low-income rates increased among successive cohorts of entering immigrants, both in absolute terms and relative to the Canadian born (they have), (2) is this increase due to changes in their characteristics (e.g. education, age, source country, language etc.), (3) do low-income rates fall as new immigrants acquire Canadian experience, and are there signs that low-income rates fall faster among the more recent entering cohorts with the higher entry level rates, resulting in some "catch-up", and (4) in the major Canadian cities, to what extent was the deterioration in the city level low-income rates during the 1990s concentrated among immigrants? The analysis covers the period from 1980 to 2000, and focuses on change between 1980 to 1990, and 1990 to 2000, years that are roughly at business cycle peaks. Basically, low-income rates have been falling over the past two decades among the Canadian born, and rising among immigrants. A discussion of the possible determinants of the trends mentioned above is included in the literature review and the conclusion.

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    File URL: http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/olc-cel/olc.action?ObjId=11F0019M2003198&ObjType=46&lang=en&limit=0
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    Paper provided by Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch in its series Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series with number 2003198e.

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    Date of creation: 19 Jun 2003
    Handle: RePEc:stc:stcp3e:2003198e
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    1. James Ted McDonald & Christopher Worswick, 1998. "The Earnings of Immigrant Men in Canada: Job Tenure, Cohort, and Macroeconomic Conditions," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(3), pages 465-482, April.
    2. David E. Bloom & Morley Gunderson, 1991. "An Analysis of the Earnings of Canadian Immigrants," NBER Chapters, in: Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market, pages 321-342 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Christopher Worswick, 1996. "Immigrant Families in the Canadian Labour Market," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 22(4), pages 378-396, December.
    4. Yves Gingras & Richard Roy, 2000. "Is There a Skill Gap in Canada?," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 26(s1), pages 159-174, July.
    5. Francine D. Blau & John W. Graham, 1990. "Black-White Differences in Wealth and Asset Composition," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 321-339.
    6. 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.
    7. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-489, October.
    8. David E. Bloom & Gilles Grenier & Morley Gunderson, 1995. "The Changing Labour Market Position of Canadian Immigrants," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(4b), pages 987-1005, November.
    9. Paul Beaudry & David A. Green, 2000. "Cohort patterns in Canadian earnings: assessing the role of skill premia in inequality trends," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(4), pages 907-936, November.
    10. Michael Baker & Dwayne Benjamin, 1995. "The Receipt of Transfer Payments by Immigrants to Canada," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(4), pages 650-676.
    11. Heisz, Andrew & Picot, Garnett, 2000. "The Performance of the 1990s Canadian Labour Market," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2000148e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    12. Mary L. Grant, 1999. "Evidence of New Immigrant Assimilation in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(4), pages 930-955, August.
    13. Arnold de Silva, 1997. "Immigrant Participation in the Unemployment Insurance System," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 23(4), pages 375-397, December.
    14. George J. Borjas, 1993. "Immigration Policy, National Origin, and Immigrant Skills: A Comparison of Canada and the United States," NBER Chapters, in: Small Differences That Matter: Labor Markets and Income Maintenance in Canada and the United States, pages 21-44 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Baker, Michael & Benjamin, Dwayne, 1994. "The Performance of Immigrants in the Canadian Labor Market," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(3), pages 369-405, July.
    16. Christopher Worswick, 1999. "Credit Constraints and the Labour Supply of Immigrant Families in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(1), pages 152-170, February.
    17. James Ted McDonald & Christopher Worswick, 1997. "Unemployment Incidence of Immigrant Men in Canada," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 23(4), pages 353-373, December.
    18. Ana Ferrer & W. Craig Riddell, 2008. "Education, credentials, and immigrant earnings," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 41(1), pages 186-216, February.
    19. Baker, Michael & Benjamin, Dwayne, 1997. "The Role of the Family in Immigrants' Labor-Market Activity: An Evaluation of Alternative Explanations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(4), pages 705-727, September.
    20. Garnett Picot & Andrew Heisz, 2000. "The Performance of the 1990s Canadian Labour Market," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 26(s1), pages 7-25, July.
    21. Charles M. Beach & Christopher Worswick, 1993. "Is There a Double-Negative Effect on the Earnings of Immigrant Women?," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 19(1), pages 36-53, March.
    22. Geoffrey Carliner, 1981. "Wage Differences by Language Group and the Market for Language Skills in Canada," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 16(3), pages 384-399.
    23. George J. Borjas, 1991. "Immigration and Self-Selection," NBER Chapters, in: Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market, pages 29-76 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    24. Sweetman, Arthur, 2004. "Immigrant Source Country Educational Quality and Canadian Labour Market Outcomes," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2004234e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    25. John M. Abowd & Richard B. Freeman, 1991. "Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number abow91-1, April.
    26. Lars Osberg, 2000. "Poverty in Canada and the United States: measurement, trends, and implications," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(4), pages 847-877, November.
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