September 11, 2012
Report: Immigrants Appear to Earn Wage Premium from Citizenship
Beyond imparting political and social rights, naturalization appears to confer economic gains for immigrants in the United States, with a wage premium of at least 5 percent, according to a new Migration Policy Institute study (MPI) released today. The report, The Economic Value of Citizenship for Immigrants in the United States, analyzes the impact of naturalization on immigrants and assesses a number of studies that have examined the earnings gap between naturalized and noncitizen immigrants — a divide that widened over the economic crisis. Even after accounting for the fact that naturalized immigrants have higher levels of education, better language skills and more work experience in the United States than noncitizens, the MPI study concludes there is some evidence of a wage premium of at least 5 percent resulting from citizenship.
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