President-elect Donald Trump's harsh stance on Mexican jobs and immigration could end up backfiring — by prompting more Mexicans to look for work in the United States.
Since the Great Recession, improved job prospects in Mexico have prompted a greater number of unauthorized Mexican immigrants moving from the United States back to Mexico than the other way around, immigration data show. Many of those new jobs in Mexico have come about thanks to a rising amount of trade between the two countries since 1994, when NAFTA went into effect.
Between 2009 and 2014, a million Mexican families, some of whose children were born in the United States, returned to Mexico, according to an analysis by the Pew Research Center. The analysis also found that, in addition to reversing the flow of Mexican immigration, the overall level of migration between the two countries, in either direction, fell to its lowest level since the 1990s.