Is there a preference for Latin-Americans in the Spanish labour market? An analysis on labour integration by origin

Elena Vidal-Coso, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
Daniela Vono, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

In the recent and intense growth of immigration into Spain, the Latin-American population has played an essential role. In 2008, they represented one of each three foreigners residing in a country. In fact, Latin-Americans are the main drivers of this growth, to the extent that some writers have referred to their participation as a “Latin-Americanization” of the foreign immigration flows, or even as a preference compared to other origins. Considering this context, the objective of this paper is to explore the main characteristics of the Latin-American workers in comparison to the rest of immigrant and native workers for the period between 1999 and 2009. Using data from the Spanish Labour Force Survey for the 1999-2009 (second quarters) period, we will focus the analysis on overqualified employees and on the industrial and occupational segregation within the segmented Spanish labour market. Specifically, our objectives are: 1) to analyze the evolution of employed and of unemployed immigrants by sex and country of birth; 2) to analyze immigrants’ levels of labour segregation in order to identify concentration differences at the sectors of activity and occupations; 3) to analyze the evolution of the labour insertion of overqualified immigrants at different the occupations’ groups; 4) to analyze the factors that influence the percentage of over-qualified workers according to sex and region of birth. We expect to identify lower indexes of labour segregation and a lower impact of the economic crisis on the occupational options of Latin-Americans in comparison to non-European population. We also expect a significant impact of the higher presence of women among Latin-American immigrants, which is particularly decisive within this collective in order to explain the existing differentials of labour integration by sex, more than in the rest of collectives.

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Presented in Poster Session 2