nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2007‒11‒10
fourteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Immigration and Crime in Early 20th Century America By Carolyn Moehling; Anne Morrison Piehl
  2. Return Migration, Investment in Children, and Intergenerational Mobility: Comparing Sons of Foreign and Native Born Fathers By Christian Dustmann
  3. The Effects of Immigration on US Wages and Rents: A General Equilibrium Approach By Ottaviano, Gianmarco I P; Peri, Giovanni
  4. Wealth and Asset Holdings of Immigrants in Germany By Mathias Sinning
  5. Optimal Immigration Policy: Permanent, Guest-Worker, or Mode IV? By Maurice Schiff
  6. The Persistence of Welfare Participation By Thomas Andrén
  7. The Relationship Among African American Male Earnings, Employment, Incarceration and Immigration: A Time Series Approach By Stevans, Lonnie
  8. Trade and Migration in an Enlarged European Union: A Spatial Analysis By Justin B. May
  9. Integration of migrants in Italy: A simple general and objective measure By Di Bartolomeo Anna; Di Bartolomeo Giovanni
  10. The Determinants of Actual Migration and the Role of Wages and Unemployment in Albania: an Empirical Analysis By Cristina Cattaneo
  11. The Self-Selection in the Migration Process: What Can We Learn? By Cristina Cattaneo
  12. Who Remits? The Case of Nicaragua By George S. Naufal
  13. Foreign Direct Investment and Country-Specific Human Capital By Jinyoung Kim; Jungsoo Park
  14. International migration with heterogeneous agents : theory and evidence By Brücker, Herbert; Schröder, Philipp J.H.

  1. By: Carolyn Moehling; Anne Morrison Piehl
    Abstract: Research on crime in the late 20th century has consistently shown that immigrants have lower rates of involvement in criminal activity than natives. We find that a century ago immigrants may have been slightly more likely than natives to be involved in crime. In 1904 prison commitment rates for more serious crimes were quite similar by nativity for all ages except ages 18 and 19 when the commitment rate for immigrants was higher than for the native born. By 1930, immigrants were less likely than natives to be committed to prisons at all ages 20 and older. But this advantage disappears when one looks at commitments for violent offenses. <br><br>Aggregation bias and the absence of accurate population data meant that analysts at the time missed these important features of the immigrant-native incarceration comparison. The relative decline of the criminality of the foreign born reflected a growing gap between natives and immigrants at older ages, one that was driven by sharp increases in the commitment rates of the native born, while commitment rates for the foreign born were remarkably stable.
    JEL: J01 K4 N3
    Date: 2007–11
  2. By: Christian Dustmann (University College London, CReAM, CEP and IZA)
    Abstract: This paper studies parental investment in education and intergenerational earnings mobility for father-son pairs with native and foreign born fathers. We illustrate within a simple model that for immigrants, investment in their children is related to their return migration probability. In our empirical analysis, we include a measure for return probabilities, based on repeated information about migrants' return intentions. Our results suggest that educational investments in the son are positively associated with a higher probability of a permanent migration of the father. We also find that the son's permanent wages are positively associated with the probability of the father's permanent migration. Keywords: Intergenerational mobility, return intentions, educational investment, earnings.
    Keywords: intergenerational mobility, return intentions, educational investment, earnings
    JEL: J15 J24 J62
    Date: 2007–09
  3. By: Ottaviano, Gianmarco I P; Peri, Giovanni
    Abstract: In this paper we document a strong positive correlation of immigration flows with changes in average wages and average house rents for native residents across U.S. states. Instrumental variables estimates reveal that the correlations are compatible with a causal interpretation from immigration to wages and rents of natives. Separating the effects of immigrants on natives of different schooling levels we find positive effects on the wages and rents of highly educated and small effects on the wages (negative) and rents (positive) of less educated. We propose a model where natives and immigrants of three different education levels interact in production in a central district and live in the surrounding region. In equilibrium the inflow of immigrants has a positive productive effect on natives due to complementarieties in production as well as a positive competition effect on rents. The model calibrated and simulated with U.S.-states data matches most of the estimated effects of immigrants on wages and rents of natives in the period 1990-2005. This validation suggests the proposed model as a useful tool to evaluate the impacts of alternative immigration scenarios on U.S. wages and rents.
    Keywords: housing prices; immigration; rents; U.S. States; wages
    JEL: F22 J61 R23
    Date: 2007–11
  4. By: Mathias Sinning (RWI Essen and IZA)
    Abstract: 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 homeownership 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 differences 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.
    Keywords: international migration, wealth accumulation, decomposition analysis, multiple imputation
    JEL: F22 D31
    Date: 2007–10
  5. By: Maurice Schiff (World Bank, University of Chile and IZA)
    Abstract: Immigration continues to be on the forefront of the policy debate on both sides of the Atlantic. A number of reforms of permanent and guest-worker (GW) immigration programs are being considered, and the temporary movement of service providers under Mode IV (GATS) is being negotiated at the Doha Round of the WTO. This paper contributes to the debate by examining these programs in a model where the host country government maximizes its objective function with respect to three policy instruments: the share of migrants’ deferred income payment, the value of the bond employers must post and forfeit if GWs overstay, and the size of the program. Circular migration and illegal GWs’ status regularization are considered. The paper shows that i) the optimal value of the bond is zero, ii) Mode IV is preferable to GW migration; iii) the optimal policy package consists of Mode IV and permanent migration, and iv) incorporating circular migration improves the policy package. Additional policy implications are also provided.
    Keywords: immigration, guest-worker, Mode IV, permanent, overstaying
    JEL: F20 F22 J61
    Date: 2007–09
  6. By: Thomas Andrén (Göteborg University and IZA)
    Abstract: Welfare persistence is estimated in and compared between Swedish-born and foreign-born households. This is done within the framework of a time-stationary dynamic discrete choice model controlling for the initial condition and unobserved heterogeneity. Three different types of persistence are controlled for in terms of observed and unobserved heterogeneity, serial correlation, and structural state dependence, the focus being on the latter measure. In a second step we analyze the long-run effects of receiving social assistance on future household earnings and disposable income. The results show that state dependence in Swedish welfare participation is strong in both Swedish-born and foreign-born. However, the size of the effect is three times as large for the latter group. When the effect is distributed over time, it disappears after three years for both groups. The effect of structural state dependence is decomposed into a number of observed explanatory factors. Surprisingly small effects are found from typical foreign-born factors such as time in the country and country of origin, both important determinants for welfare participation in general. When investigating the effect of social assistance participation on future earnings, we find a strong and persistent effect over the whole observation window, while no such effect could be found for disposable income. This indicates that the economic incentives to leave the dependency are very weak. The picture is similar for both Swedish-born and foreign-born, even though the negative earnings effect is somewhat larger for the latter.
    Keywords: welfare participation, immigrants, dynamic probit model, persistence, state dependence, unobserved heterogeneity, initial condition, GHK simulator, earnings, disposable income
    JEL: I30 I38 J18
    Date: 2007–10
  7. By: Stevans, Lonnie
    Abstract: The advent of rising immigration has spurred research into a number of important issues insofar as the indigenous labor market is concerned. Some of these issues regarding the nature of the effect on native workers have been studied extensively. Others, like the interrelationships among immigration flows, African-American male earnings, employment, and incarceration rates have not been widely examined. In this paper, the association among these non-stationary variables is studied in the framework of a Vector Error Correction model and the associated cointegrating relationship. We find no statistically significant association among immigration, Black male employment rates, and Black male incarceration rates over the period 1962-2006, ceteris paribus.
    Keywords: immigration; Vector Error Correction; cointegration; incarceration rates; Black male employment rates
    JEL: J23 C32 J21
    Date: 2007–10
  8. By: Justin B. May (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)
    Abstract: One of the most prominent features in the evolution of the European Union (EU) has been its geographical expansion. Using a dynamic general equilibrium approach, this paper predicts the effects of future eastward expansions of the EU on both inter- and intra-national flows of trade and labor. Underlying the simulations is a spatial model of the EU incorporating heterogeneous firms, intra-industry trade, iceberg trade costs, and many possible locations. Locations are populated by a large number of potential firms, and these firms employ labor that varies across countries in its relative skill. The dynamics of the model are such that unprofitable firms are forced to exit in the long run, and workers have the opportunity to migrate in response to steep gradients in real compensation. Novel features of the data used here are that locations are defined in a very precise way and that the simulations take as their starting point a proxy for the actual distribution of economic activity across the European landmass. The model is calibrated to match aggregate trade and migration data from the 2004 enlargement as well as data on exporter characteristics. Simulations of enlargement predict an increase in aggregate exports of potential new members to the previous EU-15 of 4.8 percent of GDP in the five-year period following adoption of the acquis communautaire and net migration flows from potential new members to the previous EU-15 of 1.1 percent of aggregate acceding country population over the same period. Moreover, the simulations deliver many of the stylized facts of economic geography.
    Keywords: Dynamic General Equilibrium, Enlargement, European Union, Migration, Spatial, Trade
    JEL: F12 F15 F16 F22
    Date: 2007–10–31
  9. By: Di Bartolomeo Anna; Di Bartolomeo Giovanni
    Abstract: Measuring migrants’ integration into host societies is a challenging task as, in general, measuring any social behavior and social phenomena. The task is affected by many specific problems related to the definition of the objective of study and the impact of subjective evaluations in the construction of an index. Our study aims to provide a measure of integration as much as possible general and objective. More in details, first, we consider some different general aspects of the integration problem related to migrants’ polarization, cultural diversification, social stability, integration in the labor market. Second, we aggregate them in a synthetic linear index, which is rather objective since the weights are computed by only considering the statistical properties of our dataset, i.e. choosing those weights that minimize the information loss in terms of data variances/co-variances.
    Keywords: migrations, migrants’ integration, regional index, principal component analysis
    Date: 2007–04
  10. By: Cristina Cattaneo (Cattaneo University (LIUC))
    Abstract: The paper explores the determinants of internal migration in Albania, adopting a neoclassical approach to migration: an internal migration function is estimated using district wage and unemployment rate differentials. The aggregate level wages and unemployment, included in the migration equation, are retrieved from a first stage wage and unemployment equations, estimated controlling for personal characteristics. Moreover, in order to test the predictions of the human capital model of migration, the difference between migrants and non-migrants is emphasized in the estimation. The data source is the “Living Standard Measurement Survey for Albania” (2002), undertaken by the national Institute of Statistics and the World Bank jointly. The results reveal that both wage and unemployment differentials are important determinats of the propensity to migrate in Albania. This conclusion is further emphasized by noting that migrants gain substantially in terms of higher returns to individual characteristics after emigration.
    Date: 2006–11
  11. By: Cristina Cattaneo (Cattaneo University (LIUC))
    Abstract: This paper reviews the theoretical and the empirical literature regarding migration in order to cast some light upon the nature of self-selection. In particular it attempts to identify the specific factors which induce a skilled rather than an un-skilled migration. As a result, some conclusions upon the existence as well as the determinants of selective processes in migration will be offered. Three contributions of the theoretical literature can be highlighted: first, sending country characteristics vis-à-vis host country conditions create uneven incentives for different levels of abilities or education, and therefore create the ground for a selectivity process. Second, migration costs play a major role in determining the direction of the selectivity and third, host country migration policies as well as demand side considerations influence the direction of the selection. The empirical evidence shows that the direction of the selectivity in terms of educational level varies considerably across countries: in some cases the emigrant flow is mainly characterized by highly educated individuals, whereas in other, the emigration flow is predominantly made by low skilled individuals. On the contrary in terms of unobservable characteristics, the empirical literature reveals that either the movers are positively selected or they are not selected at all.
    Date: 2007–02
  12. By: George S. Naufal (American University of Sharjah and IZA)
    Abstract: In this paper I use a unique data set from Nicaragua to asses the behavior of persons who send money back home. I estimate a heteroskedastic Tobit with a known form of variance to estimate the correlation of the remitting decisions of migrants. Working, residing in a developed country and belonging to the nuclear family positively affect remittances. The labor status and the level of education of the head of the household both affect remittances. The decision to participate in the remitting process appears to be positively related across migrants within the same receiving household.
    Keywords: migration, remittances, censored regression, decision making, Central America, Nicaragua
    JEL: F22 J61 O15
    Date: 2007–09
  13. By: Jinyoung Kim (Department of Economics, Korea University); Jungsoo Park (Department of Economics, Sogang University)
    Abstract: Workers who are educated abroad acquire human capital specific to the country of foreign study (for example, language capital and country-specific knowledge on firm organization and on social system) which makes them more productive than domestically educated workers when both types of workers are employed by subsidiaries of multinational firms headquartered in the country of foreign study. An increase in foreign-educated labor in an FDI-host country thus attracts more FDI from the country of foreign study. We find evidence from bilateral FDI and foreign-student data for 63 countries over the period of 1963-1998 that strongly supports this prediction. Our findings suggest that foreign-educated labor may account for a sizable portion of growth in FDI flows during the sample period.
    Keywords: foreign direct investment, multinational firm, human capital, foreign education, students abroad
    JEL: F21 F10
    Date: 2007
  14. By: Brücker, Herbert (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Schröder, Philipp J.H.
    Abstract: "Two puzzling facts of international migration are that only a small share of a sending country's population emigrates and that net migration rates tend to cease over time. This paper addresses these issues in a migration model with heterogeneous agents that features temporary migration. In equilibrium a positive relation exists between the stock of migrants and the income differential, while the net migration flow becomes zero. Consequently, empirical migration models, estimating net migration flows instead of stocks, may be misspecified. This suspicion appears to be confirmed by our empirical investigation of cointegration relationships of flow and stock migration models." (author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))
    Keywords: Herkunftsland, internationale Wanderung - Modell, Wanderungspotenzial, Wanderungsstatistik, Mobilitätsbereitschaft - Determinanten, regionale Mobilität, Einkommensunterschied, Einwanderungsland, Rückwanderung, Rückwanderungsbereitschaft, Aufenthaltsdauer, Migrationstheorie, Stromgrößenanalyse, ökonomische Faktoren, Wanderungsmotivation, Mobilitätsforschung, Europäische Union, Welt
    JEL: F22 C23 C53
    Date: 2007–10–05

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