This paper uses data from the 1980 and 1990 U.S. Censuses to study labor market assimilation of self-employed immigrants. Separate earnings functions for the self-employed and wage/salary workers are estimated. To control for endogenous sorting into the sectors, models of the self-employment decision are estimated. Self-employed immigrants are found to do substantially better in the labor market than wage/salary immigrants. Earnings of self-employed immigrants are predicted to converge with natives' wage/salary earnings at about age 30 and natives' self-employed earnings at about age 40. Including the self-employed in the sample reduces the immigrant-native earnings gap by, on average, 14%.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Received: 10 November 1999/Accepted: 3 August 2000
About this article
Cite this article
Lofstrom, M. Labor market assimilation and the self-employment decision of immigrant entrepreneurs. J Popul Econ 15, 83–114 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/PL00003841
- JEL classification: J15, J23, J61
- Key words: Immigration, assimilation, self-employment