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American Economic Review: Vol. 102 No. 3 (May 2012)

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Coming to America: Does Having a Developed Home Country Matter for Self-Employment in the United States?

Article Citation

Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth, and Willie Belton. 2012. "Coming to America: Does Having a Developed Home Country Matter for Self-Employment in the United States?" American Economic Review, 102(3): 538-42.

DOI: 10.1257/aer.102.3.538

Abstract

This research examines the relationship between the economic status of an immigrant's home country and the probability of self-employment in the US. We find that immigrants from developing countries on average have lower self-employment probabilities relative to immigrants from developed countries. Similarly, we find a positive correlation between the current HDI of an immigrant's home country and the probability of self-employment in the US. These result are unexpected given that past research suggests immigrants from countries with high levels of self-employment (developing countries) are more likely to be self-employed in the US. We provide a possible explanation for these results.

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Authors

Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth (GA Institute of Technology)
Belton, Willie (GA Institute of Technology)

JEL Classifications

J23: Labor Demand
L26: Entrepreneurship


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