Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/80540
Authors: 
Depew, Briggs
Norlander, Peter
Sorensen, Todd
Year of Publication: 
2013
Series/Report no.: 
IZA Discussion Paper 7456
Abstract: 
Critics of the H-1B program for high-skilled workers argue that the program restricts immigrant job mobility and lacks a vehicle for adjusting the number of visas during a recession. We study the job mobility of highly-skilled Indian IT guest workers and provide new evidence on their inter-firm mobility and return migration patterns. We use a unique multi-year firm level dataset to show that, outside of the Great Recession, these workers are mobile and that lower paid guest workers are more likely than higher paid guest workers to separate to another firm in the U.S. We also analyze return migration decisions and find that low wage workers repatriate more than high wage workers, and that this relationship intensified during the Great Recession. This partially mitigates concerns that guest worker visa programs do not adjust to fluctuations in the macro economy. Following this finding, we show that the employment to population ratio (EPOP) for highly-skilled male workers has fallen at a much steeper rate since 2008 than is typically recognized, once we account for the phenomenon of discouraged immigrants.
Subjects: 
skilled migration
labor market frictions
business cycles
JEL: 
F22
J42
E32
Document Type: 
Working Paper

Files in This Item:
File
Size
430.49 kB





Items in EconStor are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.