Research Papers in Economics, Department of Economics, Stockholm University
Giving up Foreign Names: An Empirical Examination of Surname Change and Earnings
() and Peter Skogman Thoursie
Abstract: In this paper we compare the earnings development for a
group of immigrants that changes their names to Swedish-sounding or neutral
names with immigrants who retain their names from the same region of birth.
Our results indicate that name-changers are apparently similar to
name-keepers and the earnings before the name change is essentially the
same for both groups. However, an earnings gap after the name change is
observed. The earnings gap corresponds to on average approximately 26
percent. Our understanding of the data and our results is that the groups
are similar before the name change and that the earnings gap after the name
change should be attributed to the name change. Our results should be
viewed as evidence of unequal treatment of immigrants and natives in the
Swedish labor market.
Keywords: Ethnic discrimination; earnings development; name change; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: J64; J71; (follow links to similar papers)
40 pages, December 21, 2006
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