On the Pro-Trade Effects of Immigrants

43 Pages Posted: 16 Jun 2012

See all articles by Massimiliano Bratti

Massimiliano Bratti

Università degli Studi di Milano - DEAS; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Luca De Benedictis

University of Macerata; Luiss University

Gianluca Santoni

St. Anna School of Advanced Studies - Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the causal effect of immigration on trade flows, using Italian panel data covering very small geographical units (NUTS-3). Exploiting the very favorable setup offered by Italy's features – the very high number of countries of origin of immigrants ('super-diversity'), the high heterogeneity of social and economic characteristics of Italian provinces coupled with the absence of cultural (e.g. language) or historical (colonial ties) attractors for immigration – controlling for a wide set of fixed effects, and dealing with the possible distortions generated by the inappropriate choice of the areal unit, we find a positive association between immigrants' stocks and both export and import flows, in line with the past literature. However, using instrumental variables based on migration enclaves, we show that immigrants have a positive and significant effect on imports only.

Keywords: migration, trade, gravity model, super-diversity, MAUP, transplanted-home bias effect, business and social networks effects

JEL Classification: F10, F14, F22, R10

Suggested Citation

Bratti, Massimiliano and De Benedictis, Luca and Santoni, Gianluca, On the Pro-Trade Effects of Immigrants. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2085215 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2085215

Massimiliano Bratti (Contact Author)

Università degli Studi di Milano - DEAS ( email )

Via Conservatorio, 7
I-20122 Milano
Italy

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Luca De Benedictis

University of Macerata ( email )

Via Crescimbeni 20
Macerata, MC 62100
Italy

HOME PAGE: http://docenti.unimc.it/luca.debenedictis

Luiss University ( email )

Viale Romania 32
Rome, 00198
Italy

Gianluca Santoni

St. Anna School of Advanced Studies - Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM) ( email )

Piazza Martiri della Liberta', 33
Pisa, I-56127
Italy

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