New Entrants Facing the Great Recession: Wage and Employment Trajectories of Young Immigrants

Marta Escalonilla , University of Oviedo
Begoña Cueto, University of Oviedo
Maria J. Perez-Villadoniga, University of Oviedo

This paper analyses the long-term effects of entering the labour market under tough economic conditions on young immigrant earnings and employment outcomes, controlling for the contemporaneous economic conditions workers face. We also analyse the native’s case with the aim of studying immigrant-native differences. From a cohort approach, we focus on the Spanish case, where the impact of the recession has been particularly significant among the youngest workers. Our results show the Great Recession has initially led to a blockage at the entrance of labour market, reducing the number of participants. Additionally, we observe that there is an employment scar on less-educated immigrants and a wage penalty on immigrants with high education. These negative effects persist more than nine years. In the case of natives, however, we observe they are negatively and persistently affected in terms of earnings and employment during a recession context, regardless their educational attainment. Factors such as job losses, occupational downgrading, segmented labour market and the rigid system of collective bargaining may explain these persistent negative effects of the recession.

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 Presented in Session 41. Immigration, Human Capital and Integration