Does Immigration Help Reduce Regional Labor Market Disparities? Evidence from Spain

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IZA Seminar

Place: Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 9, 53113 Bonn

Date: 15.02.2005, 12:15 - 13:30


Presentation by 

Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes (University of California, Merced)


Using data from the Spanish Labor Force Survey (Encuesta de Población Activa) from 1999 through 2003, we examine the choice of residence of Spanish immigrants by exploring whether immigrants are more responsive than their native counterparts to regional labor market opportunities. Subsequently, we investigate the policy question of whether the recent immigrants flows have helped grease the wheels of the Spanish labor market, reducing regional employment disparities. Preliminary results indicate that immigrants choose to reside in regions where their likelihood of finding a job is probably higher. These regions, which are characterized by a higher growth rate of informal work arrangements and shorter unemployment spells within skill group at any point in time, are also regions enduring higher unemployment rates. Insofar immigrants continue to view their employment chances as being higher in locations with lower overall employment growth rates, immigration will only contribute to widen regional labor market gaps.

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