Immigrant Retirement Prospects: From Bad to Worse? (Working Paper #183)

Derek Hum, University of Manitoba

Wayne Simpson, University of Manitoba

Abstract: We compare the retirement prospects of immigrant men with their native-born Canadian counterparts. Using data from the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID), we show a substantial gap that is concentrated in the private portion of pension income and contributions. Furthermore, this gap is larger for more recently arrived immigrant cohorts. We link these findings to the now substantial evidence on earnings differences from Census microdata. We present new estimates of the lifetime earnings trajectories of immigrant cohorts and compare them to trajectories for both random and matched samples of the native born. We calculate the implications of these estimates for the pension gap and reconcile the results with the evidence from SLID. Our results suggest that a continuing failure to integrate immigrants into the workforce will incur long run costs for Canada’s retirement programs.

Working Paper #183 »