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The Economic Return on New Immigrants' Human Capital: the Impact of Occupational Matching

  • Goldmann, Gustave
  • Sweetman, Arthur
  • Warman, Casey

Using a data set that provides information on source country employment, we examine the effect of source and host country occupational matching on earnings and the economic rate of return to the foreign human capital of immigrants in Canada. Examining occupational distributions we find that immigrants converge very quickly to the skill distribution of the Canadian population in terms of the main job worked, although four years after landing they are still below the source country distribution. We also find that for a large proportion of immigrants, their intended occupation differs from their source country occupation. Although immigrants who are able to match their source and host country occupations obtain higher earnings, successful occupational matching does not have any impact on the return to foreign potential work experience. However, immigrants who match their source and host country occupations do have a higher return to schooling, particularly for females.

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File URL: http://www.clsrn.econ.ubc.ca/workingpapers/CLSRN%20Working%20Paper%20no.%2021%20-%20Goldmann,%20Warman,%20Sweetman.pdf
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Paper provided by Vancouver School of Economics in its series CLSSRN working papers with number clsrn_admin-2009-30.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: 22 Apr 2009
Date of revision: 22 Apr 2009
Handle: RePEc:ubc:clssrn:clsrn_admin-2009-30
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.clsrn.econ.ubc.ca/

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  2. Gueorgui Kambourov & Iourii Manovskii, 2009. "Occupational Specificity Of Human Capital," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(1), pages 63-115, 02.
  3. 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 705-27, September.
  4. Yoram Weiss & Robert M. Sauer & Menachem Gotlibovski, 2003. "Immigration, Search, and Loss of Skill," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(3), pages 557-592, July.
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  6. Derek Hum & Wayne Simpson, 2004. "Reinterpreting the performance of immigrant wages from panel data," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 129-147, January.
  7. Casey Warman, 2007. "Ethnic enclaves and immigrant earnings growth," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 40(2), pages 401-422, May.
  8. Green, David A. & Worswick, Christopher, 2012. "Immigrant earnings profiles in the presence of human capital investment: Measuring cohort and macro effects," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 241-259.
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  10. 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.
  11. Abdurrahman Aydemir & Mikal Skuterud, 2008. "The Immigrant Wage Differential within and across Establishments," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 61(3), pages 334-352, April.
  12. Ana Ferrer & David A. Green & W. Craig Riddell, 2006. "The Effect of Literacy on Immigrant Earnings," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 41(2).
  13. Hou, Feng & Picot, Garnett & Coulombe, Simon, 2007. "Chronic Low Income and Low-income Dynamics Among Recent Immigrants," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2007294e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. Chiswick, Barry R & Miller, Paul W, 1995. "The Endogeneity between Language and Earnings: International Analyses," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(2), pages 246-88, April.
  17. Kathryn L. Shaw, 1984. "A Formulation of the Earnings Function Using the Concept of Occupational Investment," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 19(3), pages 319-340.
  18. James Ted McDonald & Christopher Worswick, 1998. "The Earnings of immigrant men in Canada: Job tenure, cohort, and macroeconomic conditions," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(3), pages 465-482, April.
  19. Green, David A, 1999. "Immigrant Occupational Attainment: Assimilation and Mobility over Time," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(1), pages 49-79, January.
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