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Labour Mobility of Migrants and Natives in the European Union: An Empirical Test of the 'Greasing of the Wheels’ Effect of Migrants

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Abstract In the context of current developments of large refugee movements across Europe, it is important to study the impact of migration flows in the European economy. One aspect of this is the impact on mobility patterns (i.e. in and out of jobs, across sectors, across regions and across types of jobs). This paper presents a comprehensive account of key determinants of labour mobility of both migrant and native workers across the EU economies between 2000 and 2011. The main indicators examined are the gross employment reallocation and net employment creation rates (GERR and NECR, respectively) taken over from Davis and Haltiwanger (1992, 1999). We analyse differences in mobility patterns in the EU‑15 and the NMS as regards age groups, skill groups, gender, length of job tenure, and the impact of labour market institutions. A particular focus of the study is the potential of migrants to ‘grease the wheels’ (Borjas, 2001) of labour markets by either themselves showing higher mobility rates or impacting on the mobility patterns of natives or existing migrants. This impact is analysed in great detail with respect to the differentiated impact of migrants of different skill groups or from different countries of origin on patterns of labour market mobility. Furthermore, apart from overall labour market mobility, we also examine inter-regional and inter-sectoral mobility.

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Paper provided by The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw in its series wiiw Working Papers with number 119.

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Length: 53 pages including 25 Tables and 3 Figures
Date of creation: Aug 2015
Publication status: Published as wiiw Working Paper
Handle: RePEc:wii:wpaper:119
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  1. Aslund, Olof, 2005. "Now and forever? Initial and subsequent location choices of immigrants," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 141-165, March.
  2. Christopher A. Pissarides & Barbara Petrongolo, 2001. "Looking into the Black Box: A Survey of the Matching Function," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 390-431, June.
  3. Robert Hierländer & Peter Huber & Anna Iara & Michael Landesmann & Klaus Nowotny & Mary O'Mahony & Fei Peng & Catherine Robinson & Robert Stehrer, 2010. "Migration, Skills and Productivity," wiiw Research Reports 365, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
  4. Carmen Pagés & Alejandro Micco, 2004. "Employment Protection and Gross Job Flows: A Differences-in-Differences Approach," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 1106, Inter-American Development Bank.
  5. Massimiliano Tani, 2003. "Do Foreigners Cushion Native Jobs? The Case of European Regions in the 1990s," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 17(4), pages 459-487, December.
  6. Mark D. Partridge & Dan S. Rickman, 2006. "An SVAR Model of Fluctuations in U.S. Migration Flows and State Labor Market Dynamics," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 72(4), pages 958-980, April.
  7. Davis, Steven J & Haltiwanger, John & Schuh, Scott, 1996. "Small Business and Job Creation: Dissecting the Myth and Reassessing the Facts," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 297-315, August.
  8. John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1999. "Gross job flows between plants and industries," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Mar, pages 41-64.
  9. Partridge, Mark D. & Rickman, Dan S., 2003. "The waxing and waning of regional economies: the chicken-egg question of jobs versus people," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 76-97, January.
  10. Alejandro Micco - Carmen Pages, 2004. "Employment Protection and Gross Job Flows1," Econometric Society 2004 Latin American Meetings 295, Econometric Society.
  11. Brian C. Cadena & Brian K. Kovak, 2016. "Immigrants Equilibrate Local Labor Markets: Evidence from the Great Recession," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 257-290, January.
  12. Davis, Steven J. & Haltiwanger, John, 1999. "Gross job flows," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 41, pages 2711-2805 Elsevier.
  13. Christopher A. Pissarides, 2000. "Equilibrium Unemployment Theory, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262161877, January.
  14. Alejandro Micco & Carmen Pagés-Serra, 2004. "Employment Protection and Gross Job Flows: A Differences-in-Differences Approach," Research Department Publications 4365, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  15. Amuedo-Dorantes, Catalina & de la Rica, Sara, 2005. "Immigrants' Responsiveness to Labor Market Conditions and Its Implications on Regional Disparities: Evidence from Spain," IZA Discussion Papers 1557, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Pissarides, Christopher A & Wadsworth, Jonathan, 1989. "Unemployment and the Inter-regional Mobility of Labour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(397), pages 739-755, September.
  17. Røed, Marianne & Schøne, Pål, 2012. "Does immigration increase labour market flexibility?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 527-540.
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