Declining Mobility among Mexican-Born Workers in the US Labor Force

Julian Arteaga and Ashish Shenoy
Publication Date

Geographic mobility is a key component of labor supply elasticity. In this paper we document a reversal in the relative migration elasticity of Mexican-born workers in the U.S. In 2000–2010, Mexican immigrants’ choice of location within the U.S. was more responsive to local economic conditions than that of native-born Americans, with the gap expanding over the decade. This pattern subsequently reversed, and by 2020 native-born workers had a greater internal migration elasticity than their Mexican-born counterparts. This reversal is unique to immigrants of Mexican origin and not explained by the occupational or demographic composition of the Mexican-born labor force.


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