nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2014‒11‒07
six papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  2. The global economic crisis and the effect of immigration on the employment of native-born workers in Europe By Vincent Fromentin; Olivier Damette; Benteng Zou
  3. Does it matter why immigrants came here? Original motives, the labour market, and national identity in the UK By Stuart Campbell
  4. Rural-Urban Migration, Structural Transformation, and Housing Markets in China By Garriga, Carlos; Tang, Yang; Wang, Ping
  5. Evidence on policies to increase the development impacts of international migration By McKenzie, David; Yang, Dean
  6. Why do East Asian children perform so well in PISA? An investigation of Western-born children of East Asian descent By John Jerrim

  1. By: Christopher Goetz
    Abstract: This study uses a sample of unemployed workers constructed from the American Community Survey and the LEHD database, to compare the unemployment durations of those who find subsequent employment by relocating to a metropolitan area outside of their originally observed residence, versus those who find employment in their original location. Results from a hazard analysis confirm the importance of many of the determinants of migration posited in the literature, such as age, education, and local labor market conditions. While simple averages and OLS estimates indicate that migrating for a new job reduces the probability of re-employment within a given time frame and lengthens the spell of unemployment in the aggregate, after controlling for selection into migration using an IV approach based on local house price changes, the results suggest that out-migrating for employment actually has a large and significant beneficial effect of shortening the time to re-employment. This implies that those who migrate for jobs in the data may be particularly disadvantaged in their ability to find employment, and thus have a strong short-term incentive to relocate.
    Date: 2014–10
  2. By: Vincent Fromentin (CEREFIGE, Université de lorraine, et CREA, Université de Luxembourg); Olivier Damette (BETA, Université de Lorraine); Benteng Zou (CREA, Université de Luxembourg)
    Abstract: The debate regarding the economic effects of immigration has attracted renewed interest in European countries since the economic crisis. We provide an approximation for the labor market effects of immigrants in four European countries during the global economic crisis after briefly analyzing the situation of native- and foreign-born workers for the recent period. Our analysis focuses on the correlation between the stock of immigrant workers and the number of local labor market workers across several segments of the labor market using a simple model approach. Based on data from Eurostat and the LFS (Labour Force Survey), we estimate a structural dynamic model using the Generalized Method of Moments (GMM) to take into account the adjustment dynamics in the labor market and labor market segment, educational level, country of origin and gender of the workers. Overall, the empirical results suggest that the immigration shock on the employment rates of native-born workers is persistent and very weak over the business cycle. The effect is globally positive and the origin of immigrants does not appear to change the nature of the impact. We offer some explanations for these findings that are linked with the dual labor markets and the differences in the degree of substitution between native and immigrant workers.
    Keywords: Immigration; Employment rates; European countries; dynamic panel analysis
    Date: 2014
  3. By: Stuart Campbell (Department of Quantitative Social Science, Institute of Education)
    Abstract: The importance of the original motives for migration has often been asserted in the economics of migration literature, but direct measures of such motives have seldom been included in empirical models of immigrant outcomes. For the first time, I am able to directly identify work, student, family, and refugee immigrants in a large UK survey dataset. Using a sample of immigrants who have been in the country for at least five years, I show that original motives are strong predictors of employment, wages, and uptake of the native national identity. On employment and wages, I find that those who originally came as work or student immigrants are the most successful, while family immigrants do less well, and refugees fare the worst. On national identity, I find that those who originally came as refugees and family immigrants are the most likely to identify as British, while work and student immigrants are the least. My results provide new support for the predictions of the human capital model of migration in both the economic and cultural spheres, as well as for the recent 'cultural distance' model of national identity proposed by Manning and Roy. I suggest that the flexibility of the British national concept may usefully support multiculturalism, but that the pursuit of such abstract national adherence should not detract from efforts to cultivate social and economic inclusion among immigrants.
    Keywords: immigration; labour markets; wages; national identity
    JEL: J61 Z13
    Date: 2014–10–03
  4. By: Garriga, Carlos (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis); Tang, Yang (Nanyang Technological University); Wang, Ping (Washington University)
    Abstract: This paper explores the role played by structural transformation and the resulting relocation of workers from rural to urban areas in the recent housing boom in China. This development process has fostered an ongoing increase in urban housing demand, which, combined with a relatively inelastic supply due to land and entry restrictions, has raised housing and land prices. We examine the issue using a multi-sector dynamic general-equilibrium model with endogenous rural-urban migration and endogenous housing demand and supply. Our quantitative results suggest that the development process accounts for two-thirds of housing and land price movements across all urban areas. This mechanism is amplified in an extension calibrated to the two largest cities indicating that market fundamentals remain a key driver of housing and land prices.
    Keywords: Migration; structural transformation; housing boom
    JEL: D90 E20 O41 R23 R31
    Date: 2014–10–01
  5. By: McKenzie, David; Yang, Dean
    Abstract: International migration offers individuals and their families the potential to experience immediate and large gains in their incomes, and offers a large number of other positive benefits to the sending communities and countries. However, there are also concerns about potential costs of migration, including concerns about trafficking and human rights, a desire for remittances to be used more effectively, and concerns about externalities from skilled workers being lost. As a result there is increasing interest in policies which can enhance the development benefits of international migration and mitigate these potential costs. This paper provides a critical review of recent research on the effectiveness of these policies at three stages of the migration process: pre-departure, during migration, and directed toward possible return. The existing evidence base suggests some areas of policy success: bilateral migration agreements for countries whose workers have few other migration options, developing new savings and remittance products that allow migrants more control over how their money is used, and some efforts to provide financial education to migrants and their families. Suggestive evidence together with theory offers support for a number of other policies, such as lowering the cost of remittances, reducing passport costs, offering dual citizenship, and removing exit barriers to migration. Research offers reasons to be cautious about some policies, such as enforcing strong rights for migrants like high minimum wages. Nevertheless, the paper finds the evidence base to be weak for many policies, with no reliable research on the impact of most return migration programs, nor for whether countries should be trying to induce communal remitting through matching funds.
    Keywords: Population Policies,Remittances,Access to Finance,Financial Literacy,Debt Markets
    Date: 2014–10–01
  6. By: John Jerrim (Department of Quantitative Social Science, Institute of Education)
    Abstract: A small group of high-performing East Asian economies dominate the top of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) rankings. This has caught the attention of Western policymakers, who want to know why East Asian children obtain such high PISA scores, and what can be done to replicate their success. In this paper I investigate whether children of East Asian descent, who were born and raised in a Western country (Australia), also score highly on the PISA test. I then explore whether their superior performance (relative to children of Australian heritage) can be explained by reasons often given for East Asian students’ extraordinary educational achievements. My results suggest that second-generation East Asian immigrants outperform their native Australian peers in mathematics by more than 100 PISA test points – the equivalent of two and a half years of schooling. Moreover, the magnitude of this achievement gap has increased substantially over the last ten years. Yet there is no ‘silver bullet’ that can explain why East Asian children excel academically. Rather a combination of factors, each making their own independent contribution, seem to be at play. Western policymakers should therefore appreciate that it may only be possible to catch the leading East Asian economies in the PISA rankings with widespread cultural change.
    Keywords: PISA, East Asia, second-generation immigrant
    JEL: I20
    Date: 2014–10–07

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