nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2015‒12‒20
four papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Escaping the Holocaust: Human and health capital of refugees to the United States, 1940-42 By Blum, Matthias; Rei, Claudia
  2. Migration and Housing Price Effects of Place-Based College Scholarships By Timothy J. Bartik; Nathan Sotherland
  3. Homeownership of immigrants in France: selection effects related to international migration flows By Gobillon, Laurent; Solignac, Matthieu
  4. A Simulation Analysis of the Longer-Term Effects of Immigration on Per Capita Income in an Aging Population By Frank T. Denton; Byron G. Spencer

  1. By: Blum, Matthias; Rei, Claudia
    Abstract: The large-scale persecution of Jews during World War II generated massive refugee movements. Using data from 20,441 predominantly Jewish passengers from 19 countries traveling from Lisbon to New York between 1940 and 1942, we analyze the last wave of refugees escaping the Holocaust and verify the validity of height as a proxy for human and health capital. We further show this episode of European migration displays well-known features of migrant self-selection: early migrants were taller than late migrants; a large migrant stock reduces migrant selectivity; and economic barriers to migration apply. Our findings show that Europe experienced substantial losses in human and health capital while the US benefitted from the immigration of European refugees.
    Keywords: migration,refugees,World War II,Holocaust,Germany,New York
    JEL: N32 N34 N42 N44 F22 J24 O15
    Date: 2015
  2. By: Timothy J. Bartik (W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research); Nathan Sotherland (W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research)
    Abstract: Place-based college scholarships, such as the Kalamazoo Promise, provide students who live in a particular place, and/or who attend a particular school district, with generous college scholarships. An important potential benefit from such "Promise programs" is their short-term effects on local economic development. Generous Promise scholarships provide an incentive for families to locate in a particular place, which may change migration patterns, and potentially boost local employment and housing prices. Using data from the American Community Survey, this paper estimates the average effects of eight relatively generous Promise programs on migration rates and housing prices in their local labor market. The paper finds evidence that Promise programs lead to significantly reduced out-migration rates for at least three years after a Promise program is announced. These reductions in out-migration rates are larger for households with children, and are also larger when we focus on smaller areas around the Promise-eligible zone rather than the entire local labor market. These out-migration effects are large, implying that Promise programs lead to a 1.7 percent increase in overall population of the local labor market.
    Keywords: College scholarships, Kalamazoo Promise, local economic development, migration
    JEL: I22 I25 I28 J61 R23
    Date: 2015–11
  3. By: Gobillon, Laurent; Solignac, Matthieu
    Abstract: We investigate the difference in homeownership rates between natives and first-generation immigrants in France, and how this difference evolves over the 1975-1999 period, by using a large longitudinal dataset. We find that the homeownership gap is large and has increased. Entries into the territory have a large negative effect on the evolution of homeownership rates for immigrants. Although entrants have on average better education than people staying in the territory for the entire period (i.e. stayers), they are younger and thus at an earlier stage in the wealth accumulation process. They are also located in large cities, where the homeownership rate is lower, and the returns to their characteristics are lower than those for stayers. Leavers have a positive effect on the evolution of homeownership rates for immigrants because they have a low access to homeownership and they exit the country. But this effect is only one-third that of entrants. For stayers, we show that returns to characteristics change in favor of immigrants, which is consistent with assimilation theories. However, among stayers who access homeownership, immigrants end up in owned dwellings that are of lesser quality than natives.
    Keywords: homeownership; immigrants; longitudinal data
    JEL: J15 R21
    Date: 2015–12
  4. By: Frank T. Denton; Byron G. Spencer
    Abstract: Immigration is a possible instrument for offsetting longer-run adverse effects of population aging on per capita income. Our “laboratory” is a fictional country Alpha to which we assign demographic characteristics typical of a country experiencing population aging. Simulations indicate that a very high immigration rate with heavy concentration in younger working ages might be required to keep per capita income from declining. More rapid productivity growth would also offset population aging as would higher rates of labour participation of older people. Longer life expectancy, taken alone, would lower per capita real income, as would higher fertility rates.
    Keywords: immigration, per capita income, population aging, age structure, simulation
    JEL: J10 J11 J18
    Date: 2015–12

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