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How do very open economies adjust to large immigration flows? Recent evidence from Spanish regions
González Luna, Libertad; Ortega, Francesc
Universitat Pompeu Fabra. Departament d'Economia i Empresa
In recent years, Spain has received unprecedented immigration flows. Between 2001 and 2006 the fraction of the population born abroad more than doubled, increasing from4.8% to 10.8%. For Spanish provinces with above-median inflows (relative to population),immigration increased by 24% the number of high school dropouts while only increasingcollege graduates by 11%. We study different channels by which regional labor markets haveabsorbed the large increase in relative supply of low educated workers. We identify theexogenous supply shock using historical immigrant settlement patterns by country of origin.Using data from the Labor Force Survey and the decennial Census, we find a large expansion ofemployment in high immigration regions. Disaggregating by industry, the absorption operatedthrough large increases in the share of low-educated workers, compared to the same industry inlow-immigration regions. We do not find changes in sectoral specialization. Overall, andperhaps surprisingly, the pattern of absorption is very similar to the one found in the US.
Labour, Public, Development and Health Economics
open economies
instrumental variables
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