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Title:Coming to America: does immigrant's home country economic status impact the probability of self-employment in the U.S.? PDF Logo
Authors:Oyelere, Ruth Uwaifo
Belton, Willie
Issue Date:2009
Series/Report no.:IZA discussion papers 4178
Abstract:This paper examines the impact of home country economic status on immigrant self-employment probability in the U.S. We estimate a probability model and find that, consistent across race, immigrants from developed countries are more likely to be self-employed in the U.S than are immigrants from developing countries. This result is unexpected given previous research which suggests that immigrants from countries with high levels of self-employment tend to be more involved in self-employment in the U.S. Developing countries on average have higher self-employment rates than do developed countries but our research shows that immigrants from developing countries have similar or lower self-employment probabilities relative to native born White Americans, whereas immigrant from developed countries have significantly higher self-employment probabilities relative to native born White Americans. We provide two potential explanations for this result. First, immigrants from developed countries may indeed have more and better access to start-up capital from their country of origin. Second, institutional arrangements in the developed world may be similar across countries allowing immigrants from developed countries to have an informational advantage over immigrants from developing countries.
Subjects:Self-employment
immigrant
home country
entrepreneurship
JEL:J21
E24
J61
J40
Persistent Identifier of the first edition:urn:nbn:de:101:1-2009060893
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

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