Using the Mexican Migration Project sample, this paper explores the patterns of trip duration for Mexican immigrants to the United States and the reasons for the patterns observed. I found that the most important factors leading to changes in trip duration are US immigration policy, the conditions of the Mexican economy, and the development of social networks. It appears that the legalization of many immigrants after passage of the Immigration Reform and Control Act encouraged short-term migration, but the build-up at the US-Mexico border may have changed this pattern leading to longer duration in the United States. Furthermore, changes in the exchange rate, a devaluation of the peso relative to the dollar, for example, leads to more return migration, as immigrants are able to get more value for his dollars in Mexico. On the other hand, an expansion of networks and resources for immigrants in the United States leads to longer duration in the United States.
Population Research and Policy Review – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 17, 2004
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