Migration Constraints and Disparate Responses to Changing Job Opportunities

53 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2019 Last revised: 16 May 2019

See all articles by Kalee Burns

Kalee Burns

Georgia State University

Julie L. Hotchkiss

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta; Georgia State University - Department of Economics

Date Written: 2019-02-11

Abstract

Using the Current Population Survey between 1996 and 2018, this paper investigates the role constraints to migration might play in explaining racial/ethnic disparities in the labor market. The Delta Index of dissimilarity is used to illustrate a greater distributional mismatch between race/education specific workers and jobs among minorities relative to white non-Hispanics. Regression analysis then shows that this mismatch is consistent with minorities being less responsive to changes in the distribution of job opportunities. However, minorities are more responsive when the growing job opportunities are located in areas with greater same-racial/ethnic representation, suggesting that social constraints might play a role in the observed distributional mismatch. The analysis focuses on 25–54 year old men.

Keywords: racial labor market disparities, migration costs, Delta Index, social costs, place-based, people-based, mismatch

JEL Classification: J15, J18, J61

Suggested Citation

Burns, Kalee and Hotchkiss, Julie L., Migration Constraints and Disparate Responses to Changing Job Opportunities (2019-02-11). FRB Atlanta Working Paper No. 2019-1. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3332915 or http://dx.doi.org/10.29338/wp2019-01

Kalee Burns (Contact Author)

Georgia State University

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Julie L. Hotchkiss

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta ( email )

Research Department
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404-498-8058 (Fax)

Georgia State University - Department of Economics ( email )

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