Economic Strategies of Immigrant and Non-Immigrant Families in Los Angeles
Sarah Edgington, University of California, Los Angeles
This paper uses the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey to describe how families with children in Los Angeles combine economic resources. I ask whether immigrant and non-immigrant mothers pursue different family economic strategies and they differ in the short-term stability of their income-generating activities. I ask what individual and family characteristics, other than immigration status, account for differences in strategies and stability. I find that the families of immigrant mothers are more likely than those of native-born mothers to rely only on income from employment rather than combining resources, a difference not explained by differences in human capital and other individual characteristics. Additionally, there is no evidence of differences in family strategies among naturalized citizens, documented immigrants, and undocumented immigrants. Mothers who are undocumented immigrants or naturalized citizens are less likely to make transitions in their income generating activities than mothers who are native-born or documented immigrants.