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Journal Article

New Immigrants’ Location Choices: Magnets without Welfare

Neeraj Kaushal
Journal of Labor Economics
Vol. 23, No. 1 (January 2005), pp. 59-80
DOI: 10.1086/425433
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/425433
Page Count: 22
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New Immigrants’ Location Choices: Magnets without Welfare
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Abstract

The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act denied legal noncitizens who arrived in the United States after August 1996 access to means‐tested federal benefits for the first 5 years. However, using state funds, a number of states restored some of the benefits. I use this state‐level policy variation to study whether newly arrived immigrants make location decisions on the basis of benefit eligibility and generosity. I find that safety‐net programs have little effect on the location choices of newly arrived low‐skilled unmarried immigrant women.

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