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Before Crisis: Gender and Economic Outcomes of the Two Largest Immigrant Communities in Spain


  • The authors want to thank to Mikolaj Stanek, Javier Silvestre, Alberto Veira-Ramos and the three anonymous reviewers for their suggestions. An earlier version of this paper was presented on March 2008 at the conference La ENCUESTA NACIONAL DE INMIGRANTES [ENI]: Explotación con perspectivas comparativas nacionales e internacionales, supported by funding from the Ministry of Education of Spain (SEJ2005 ? 02395/SOCI) and the Ministry of Science and Technology of Spain (CSO2008-03616/SOCI). For Dumitru Sandu this study is partially the result of the research within EC 7th Framework Programme The Europeanisation of Everyday Life: Cross-Border Practices and Transnational Identities among EU and Third-Country Citizens (EUCROSS).


In this study, we compare labor force outcomes of the two largest immigrant communities in Spain (Moroccans and Romanians) before the economic crisis hit. We are interested in understanding if and how gender influences the labor force outcomes (wage per hour, labor force participation, and unemployment rate) of these two immigrant groups. Our analyses show that, overall, gender is an important variable on Spanish labor market, but it affects differently the two groups. There is a male job market and a female job market for both Romanian and Moroccan immigrants, with men earning significantly higher wages than women. However, while for Moroccans, working women differ significantly from men in terms of demographic characteristics, Romanian women and men have similar demographic characteristics and comparable levels of labor force participation, but differ in terms of wage levels.

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