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Coming Out of the Shadows: Learning About Legal Status and Wages from the Legalized Population

S.A. Kossoudji and Deborah Cobb-Clark ()

CEPR Discussion Papers from Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University

Abstract: In 1986, Congress attempted to reduce the incentives for unauthorized migration by eliminating U.S. employment opportunities for unauthorized workers. To recognize the commitment that many unauthorized workers had already made to the U.S. labor market, amnesty was granted to approximately 1.7 million long-term unauthorized workers under the General Legalization Program. It was believed that legalization would bring the workers "out of the shadows" and improve their labor market oppoortunities. Estimation of wages using panel data for a sample of legalized men and a comparison sample of legal workers provides evidence that this policy shift has successfully achieved this aim.

Keywords: WAGES; MIGRATION; EMPLOYMENT; LABOUR MARKET (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F22 J20 J21 J30 J31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 32 pages
Date: 1996
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