Rationing as a Determinant of Immigrant Composition and Outcomes

By Edward Lazear
AEA Papers and Proceedings
May2020 Vol. 110 Pages 335–339.

Willingness to migrate is a necessary but not sufficient condition for migration from an origin to destination country. For the United States and other countries with an excess supply of immigrants, the slot rationing rule is a key determinant of immigrant composition not captured by supply-based models. A stylized rationing based model better explains the attainment of immigrants in both the U.S. and Sweden with the model’s two variables explaining over 50% of the variation in origin country education attainment and earnings.