Using New Immigrant Survey data, we identify immigrants who were unauthorized to work prior to obtaining Legal Permanent Resident status, and examine whether lacking legal status to work in the United States constrains employment outcomes of illegal immigrants. The data reveal no evidence of improved employment outcomes attributable to legal status, except among the high-skilled. In light of evidence that unauthorized immigrants experienced increased wages as a result of receiving amnesty through the 1986 Immigration and Reform Control Act, we interpret the results as consistent with a reduced threat of employer sanctions combined with widespread availability of false work authorization documents.
Related Content
How different are the wage curves for formal and informal workers? Evidence from Turkey
This paper estimates wage curves for formal and informal workers using a rich individual level data for Turkey over the period 2005–2009. The wage curve is an empirical regularity describing a negative relationship between regional unemployment rates and individuals' real wages. While this rela...


Spanish Regional Unemployment Revisited: The Role of Capital Accumulation
This paper provides new evidence for the evolution of regional unemployment rates in Spain over the period between 1980 and 2000. It argues that interactive dynamic systems of labour demand, wage setting and labour force equations (1) allow for a richer interpretation of regional disparities, and...
The effects of agglomeration on wages: evidence from the micro-level
This paper estimates individual wage equations to test two rival non-nested theories of economic agglomeration, namely New Economic Geography (NEG), as represented by the NEG wage equation and urban economic (UE) theory, in which wages relate to employment density. In the U.K. context, we find th...


Regional wage differences in the netherlands: micro evidence on agglomeration externalities
Based on micro data on individual workers for the period 2000–2005, we show that wage differentials in the Netherlands are small but present. A large part of these differentials can be attributed to individual characteristics. Remaining effects are partially explained by variations in employmen...
Low-wage migrants in northwestern Beijing, China: The hikers in the urbanisation and growth process
In the post-Mao era from the 1980s, market reforms have seen profit-led neoliberal forces being introduced into China's urban spatial movements. In supporting such movements, labour mobility is allowed but the hukou system has been retained to prevent urban informality and slum formation and to c...

The Returns to Migration: The Influence of Education and Migration Type
We show the impact of migration type on real wages over time. We create a migration and earnings history from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth over the period 1979–2002. We estimate the effects of primary, onward, and two types of return migration on real wages using a panel data model...
Balanced budget multipliers for small open regions within a federal system: evidence from the scottish variable rate of income tax
This paper explores the impact on aggregate economic activity in a small, open region of an income tax funded expansion in public consumption that has no direct supply-side effects. The conventional balanced budget multiplier produces an unambiguously positive macroeconomic stimulus, but the inco...

Spatial Patterns of Private Sector and Public Sector Non-Agricultural Jobs in Rural Northeast Thailand
Published evidence from developing countries shows that in rural areas participation in non-agricultural wage-employment rises with proximity to urban centres, while earnings do not. This paper explores the reasons for this phenomenon, analysing the job characteristics of rural workers in detail....
Modelling the Effects of Immigration on Regional Economic Performance and Wage Distribution: A Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) Analysis of Three European Union Regions
The paper uses a regional computable general equilibrium (CGE) model to analyse the effects of immigration on three small remote European Union regions located within Scotland (UK), Greece and Latvia. Two migration scenarios are assessed. In the first, total labour supply is affected. In the seco...

Geographical Mobility and Potential Wage Gain of Immigrants within Spain
Geographical mobility of workers within countries can be a means of equilibrating regional economic disparities. Within this context, a relevant topic is the mobility of foreign workers in the destination country. The Spanish case is interesting, because Spain has one of Europe's fastest-growing ...