We examine the role of migrants in trade using a firm-level approach. We exploit a new employer–employee panel for Sweden, which encompasses close to 600,000 full-time employees, approximately 12,000 firms and data for 176 countries for the period 1998–2007. The resulting analysis provides novel firm-level evidence on the trade-migration relationship. Foreign-born workers have a positive association with firm exports. However, immigrants do not have an unconditional positive impact on firm trade. Mainly small firms gain from hiring foreign-born workers, and migrants need to be skilled and recently arrived to have a clear positive impact on firm export performance.
Hatzigeorgiou, A., & Lodefalk, M. (2016). Migrants’ Influence on Firm-level Exports. Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, 16(4), 477–497. DOI: 10.1007/s10842-015-0215-7