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How Immigration Actually Affects Employment and Wages

Heated arguments about immigration are among the mainstays of American politics, particularly when the discussion extends to the labor market and other elements related to the national economy.

Immigration is one of the most passionate items of contention within the American electorate. Large blocks of voters can be swayed to support one candidate or another based on their views on immigration; to this effect, history shows that a negative stance in this regard is a populist method to fire up voters.

Recent reports issued by the Center on Immigration Studies (CIS) have been embraced by politicians who are generally against immigration in the United States. One of these reports shows that the ongoing recovery of the national labor market is more beneficial to job seekers who are immigrants than to those who aren’t.

According to immigration attorneys in San Diego, the problem with CIS reports on the labor market is that they are produced with only one perspective, which happens to only focus on the current situation. This research approach is of no use to economists, especially to those who focus on the labor market.

It is too easy to reach a conclusion about immigrants having a negative effect on job markets by looking at CIS reports. This is of little value to labor economists; for example, how can we actually determine that immigrants have a negative impact on wages or employment without looking at reports from job markets where immigration is negligible?

Economists are more comfortable looking at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which for many years has suggested that immigrants participating in the U.S. job market have increased by one percent from 2005 to 2014. Interestingly enough, the non-immigrant segment of the national workforce was reduced by one percent in that same period, which suggests that immigrants have actually stepped in to fill a slight employment gap.

From 2008 to 2014, the U.S. job market was dismal, and this negative situation affected both immigrants and non-immigrants. In this regard, non-immigrants have been more resilient as they were able to snag more open positions than immigrants, who returned to their countries in large numbers during the Great American Recession.

In the end, CIS reports are too static for the dynamic needs of economists, but they make good sound bites for populist politicians.

If you or a loved one needs help wading through immigration issues, call the trusted attorneys at KS Visa Law at (858) 874-0711. Schedule your free immigration consultation in San Diego and find out how we can be of assistance. Reach out today. We are here to help.

April 2024