In subsequent work (Borjas and Trejo 1993), they also showed that differences in welfare participation rates among immigrant groups defined by country of origin are strongly related to source-country characteristics such as national output and income inequality.
These three trends - the large effect of age at arrival on welfare participation rates, the increase of this effect, and the increase in the share who migrate at older ages suggest that the family reunification-based immigration policy of the United States since 1965 places a burden on the welfare system, because it is unlikely that those who migrated after age 55 were admitted under occupational preference categories.
Thus, immigrants who come late in life have higher welfare participation rates both because they have lower incomes and because they have a higher propensity to apply for benefits if eligible.
Much discussion in this paper has been devoted to the effect of age at migration on welfare participation rates.
Blank's results imply that caseloads are mildly sensitive to the unemployment rate: the estimated elasticity of the welfare participation rate with respect to a sustained increase in the unemployment rate is roughly 0.
63) In contrast to the trend in the total AFDC/TANF caseload (figure 1), the welfare participation rate was much more stable before 1994, hovering around 30 percent, with a peak of 32.
Of course, our confidence in our counterfactual decomposition relies, to a large degree, on the success of our empirical model in fitting the historical data on work and welfare participation rates.
To see this, note that table 1 also shows that, both before and after time limits were imposed, welfare participation rates were much higher among single mothers with younger children (41 percent before time limits) than among those with older children (16 percent).
For example, in the row for 2002 in the top panel of table 7, the first data column indicates that our model predicts a welfare participation rate drop of 23.
In contrast, the next two columns of table 7 show that, according to our model, the drop in the welfare participation rate from 1993 to 2002 would have been 13.
6 percentage points, or 7 percent, of the total decline in the welfare participation rate.
The bottom two panels of table 7 examine the determinants of the fall in the welfare participation rate separately by race.