Exploring the Link between Family Reunification and Remittances: How Do U.S. Immigrant Parents Choose between Sending Remittances to Their Children and Sponsoring Them for Immigration?

Guillermina Jasso, New York University (NYU)
Mark R. Rosenzweig, Yale University

This paper explores the relationship between the sponsorship by an immigrant of family members and remittances provided to family members, using data from the New Immigrant Survey. In this preliminary exploration, we assess to what extent the two behaviors are linked, using, to guide the analysis, a simple model of the household in which an altruistic family selects who among its family members to sponsor and to whom to provide transfers. We find that among immigrant’s children, the less educated who are resident in low-wage countries are more likely to receive transfers. However, our estimates on sponsorship indicate that parents choose to sponsor those who are higher-skilled and living in countries where skills are less rewarded. Thus, we find that family reunification is positively selective on skill and negatively selective on home-country skill price, while remittance behavior is negatively selective on both skill and skill price in the origin country.

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Presented in Session 86: International Migration