Europe is discussing how to improve the labor market performance of economic migrants and their integration chances. The Canadian immigration system is often seen as a model case. Is there an earnings benefit depending on the selection channel under the economic classe? In a new Discussion Paper of the Global Labor Organization (GLO), Casey Warman, Matthew D. Webb and Christopher Worswick provide strong empirical evidence that selection matters. Using Canadian data sources they find that relative to the Family Class, the Adult Arrivals in the Skilled Worker category have earnings that are 29% higher for men and 38% higher for women. Child Arrival immigrants landing in the Skilled Worker Class have similar earnings advantages.
GLO Fellow Casey Warman is associated with the Department of Economics, Dalhousie University and NBER.
GLO Fellow Matthew D. Webb is associated with the Department of Economics, Carleton University
GLO Fellow Christopher Worswick is associated with the Department of Economics, Carleton University and CReAM
Casey Warman, Matthew D. Webb & Christopher Worswick: Immigrant Category of Admission and the Earnings of Adults and Children: How far does the Apple Fall? GLO Discussion Paper No. 196. FREE DOWNLOAD: Download PDF
Immigrants in many Western countries have experienced poor economic outcomes. This has led to a lack of integration of child immigrants (the 1.5 generation) and the second generation in some countries. However, in Canada, child immigrants and the second generation have on average integrated very well economically. The study examines the importance of Canada’s admission classes to determine if there is an earnings benefit of the selection under the Economic Classes to: (i) the Adult Arrival immigrants and (ii) the Child Arrival immigrants (1.5 generation) once old enough to enter the labor market. The study employs unique administrative data on landing records matched with subsequent income tax records that also allows for the linking of the records of Adult Arrival parents and their Child Arrival children. It is found that relative to the Family Class, the Adult Arrivals in the Skilled Worker category have earnings that are 29% higher for men and 38% higher for women. These differences persist even after controlling for detailed personal characteristics such as education and language fluency at 21% for men and 27% for women. Child Arrival immigrants landing in the Skilled Worker Class have earnings advantages (as adults) over their Family Class counterparts of 17% for men and 21% for women. These Child Arrival Skilled Worker advantages remain at 9% for men and 14% for women after controlling for child characteristics, the Principal Applicant parent’s characteristics and the parent’s subsequent income in Canada. (Abstract marginally adapted from the DP.)
The paper is forthcoming in the Journal of Population Economics. The responsible Editor has been Klaus F. Zimmermann.
The study is in line with earlier research on entry category effects of migrant’s labor market performance. For an analysis see a recent review paper:
Zimmermann, Klaus F., Refugee and Migrant Labor Market Integration: Europe in Need of a New Policy Agenda. Mimeo. Presented at the EUI Conference on the Integration of Migrants and Refugees, 29-30 September 2016 in Florence. Published in: Bauböck, R. and Tripkovic, M., The Integration of Migrants and Refugees. An EUI Forum on Migration, Citizenship and Demography, European University Institute, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, Florence 2017, pp. 88 – 100.
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