Rachel M. Friedberg

Department of Economics
Brown University
64 Waterman Street
Providence, RI 02912
Tel: 401/863-7578
Fax: 401/863-1970

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Brown University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

October 2009Recent Trends in the Earnings of New Immigrants to the United States
with George J. Borjas: w15406
This paper studies long-term trends in the labor market performance of immigrants in the United States, using the 1960-2000 PUMS and 1994-2009 CPS. While there was a continuous decline in the earnings of new immigrants 1960-1990, the trend reversed in the 1990s, with newcomers doing as well in 2000, relative to natives, as they had 20 years earlier. This improvement in immigrant performance is not explained by changes in origin-country composition, educational attainment or state of residence. Changes in labor market conditions, including changes in the wage structure which could differentially impact recent arrivals, can account for only a small portion of it. The upturn appears to have been caused in part by a shift in immigration policy toward high-skill workers matched with jobs, an in...
November 1996You Can't Take It With You? Immigrant Assimilation and the Portability of Human Capital
The national origin of an individual's human capital is a crucial determinant of its value. Education acquired abroad is significantly less valued than education obtained domestically. This difference can fully explain the earnings disadvantage of immigrants relative to comparable natives in Israel. Variation in the return to foreign schooling across origin countries may reflect differences in its quality and compatibility with the host labor market. Three factors language proficiency, domestic labor market experience, and further education following immigration appear to raise the return to education acquired abroad, suggesting a compound benefit of policies encouraging immigrants to obtain language and other training.

Published: Journal of Labor Economics, Vol. 18, no. 2 (April 2000): 221-251. citation courtesy of

National Bureau of Economic Research
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