Mexican Immigration Falls to Net-Zero

A major drop in the level of Mexican immigration to the US is thought to be caused by tougher anti-immigration laws and the economic slowdown. Mexican society will change as a result. 

What's the Latest Development?


Despite harsher political rhetoric when it comes to immigration policy, the number of Mexicans relocating to the US has fallen dramatically. Princeton demographer and founder of the Mexican Migration Project, Douglas Massey has documented a net-zero migration trend. "The population of undocumented immigrants in the US fell from 12 million to approximately 11 million during the height of the financial crisis (2008-09), he says. And since then, Mexicans without documents aren't migrating at rates to replace the loss, creating a net zero balance for the first time in 50 years."

What's the Big Idea?

Having substantially fewer economic migrants is set to transform Mexican society in complicated ways. As families move back home and new generations look with less ambition toward the northern border, the government is funding community development projects to modernize Mexican villages. Schools, electricity and clean water are coming to rural areas at pace which demonstrates the strengthening of the Mexican economy in the last decade. However, loss of remittancesmoney sent home by families working in the USis a serious matter. In 2010, the Mexican economy received $21.27 billion in remittances. 

Photo credit: shutterstock.com

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