The Self-Employment Experience of Immigrants

33 Pages Posted: 16 Jul 2004

See all articles by George J. Borjas

George J. Borjas

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 1986

Abstract

Self-employment is an important aspect of the immigrant experience in the labor market. Self-employment rates for immigrants exceed 15 percent for some national groups. This paper addresses three related questions on the self-employment experience of immigrants. First, how do self-employment rates of immigrants compare to those of native-born men? Second, is there an "assimilation" effect on the self-employment propensity of immigrants? Finally, are the more recent waves of immigrants facing different self-employment opportunities than the earlier waves? Using the 1970 and 1980 U.S. Censuses, the analysis shows that indeed self-employment rates of immigrants exceed those of native-born men; that there is a strong, positive impact of assimilation on self-employment rates; and that more recent waves of immigrants are opting with increasing frequency for the self-employment option.

Suggested Citation

Borjas, George J., The Self-Employment Experience of Immigrants (June 1986). NBER Working Paper No. w1942. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=344769

George J. Borjas (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-1393 (Phone)
617-495-9532 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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