Job Transfer To Immigrants Has Accelerated. The amazing drop in employment highlights President Barack Obama’s slow recovery from the deep 2008 shock, but also spotlights many companies’ growing reliance on foreign migrant labor.
Fewer Americans born in the U.S. have jobs now than were employed to November 2007, despite a working-age population growth of 11 million.
Almost one in every two jobs added since 2009 have gone to foreign-born workers.In November 2014, one in every five U.S. jobs was held by a foreign-born worker, up from one-in-six jobs in January 2010, according to federal data highlighted by the Center for Immigration Studies.
Since November 2007, the number of working legal and illegal migrants has risen by two million, from 23.1 million in November 2007 to 25.1 million in November 2014. But the number of Americans with jobs has fallen by 1.5 million, from 124 million in November 2007 to 122.6 million November 2014.
“All of the net gain in employment since 2007 has gone to immigrants (legal and illegal). … Native employment has still not returned to pre-recession levels, while immigrant employment already exceeds pre-recession level,” said a Dec. 19 statement from the group.
The job transfer from Americans to immigrants has accelerated since the economy bottomed out in mid-2009. Since January 2010, 5.4 million foreign-born people have gained jobs in the recovery.
That’s almost equal to the 6.9 million Americans who gained jobs since January 2010, even though the U.S-born working age population is five times larger than the immigration population.
The influx of foreign workers includes many foreign graduates. Their arrival is forcing many debt-burdened Americans graduates to start their careers in lower-wage jobs. Those American graduates will be stuck with lower wages for many years unless employers face a shortage of workers in the next few years.
That process has widened the gap in wealth between the wealthiest one percent and the rest of the country. The surplus of workers, dubbed a “slack labor market,” has largely been ignored by media outlets, which have tried to blame stagnant wages on Wall Street greed, technology, education, the recession and various other causes.
Media coverage of the immigration issue has overwhelmingly focused on the preferences of migrants, not the preference of actual Americans now working in canneries and meat-packing plants, hospitals, universities and office parks.
Each year, 4.3 million Americans turn 18 and compete for decent jobs. They’re joined by roughly 650,000 working-age legal immigrants, roughly 650,000 non-agriculture guest workers, and a number of illegal immigrants who cross the southern border or over stay their visas.
White House officials have tried to argue that the inflow of foreign labor will boost productivity and create opportunities for American workers. On Nov. 20, President Barack Obama announced he would provide work permits to five million illegal immigrants in the United States.
In the past, Obama has admitted that migrant workers threaten wages for lower-skilled Americans, including African-Americans. Obama has also offered work permits to at least 50,000 Central American migrants who crossed the border in 2014 and to 110,000 Haitian immigrants.
Since 2012, Obama has also given work permits to 600,000 younger illegals, under the so-called “DACA” program. Obama has also offered work permits to 100,000 additional guest workers and he announced Nov. 20 that he would increase the inflow of university trained guest workers for jobs sought by Americans graduates.
Roughly one million foreign, university-trained guest workers are already working in the United States in a wide variety of long-term jobs in universities, hospitals, finance firms, retail and technology firms.
Overall, Obama has announced plans to give work permits to an extra six million migrants, in addition to the roughly eight million legal migrants that will arrive during his eight years in the White House. That adds up to almost one new foreign worker for every two Americans who tun 18.
In a related story;
Report: Immigrant workers account for all employment growth since 2007.
Labor statistics show that foreign-born workers account for all net gains in U.S. employment in the past seven years, according to a group that advocates low immigration.
The Center for Immigration Studies issued a report Friday that found 1.5 million fewer U.S.-born workers employed in 2014 than prior to the recession in 2007. Foreign-born employment for both legal and illegal immigrants increased by more than 2 million workers during the same time period.
The data, which CIS obtained from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is evidence that native-born workers could have a harder time finding jobs under President Obama’s plan to allow more than 5 million illegal immigrants to obtain work permits, CIS officials said.
“If we continue to allow in new immigration at the current pace or choose to increase the immigration level it will be even more difficult for the native-born to make back the ground they have lost in the labor market,” the report’s authors, Steven A. Camarota and Karen Zeigler, wrote.
U.S. employment numbers have been on the rebound for months. The U.S. economy added 321,000 jobs in November, one of the strongest gains in three years. The unemployment rate has steadily fallen and is now 5.8 percent, the lowest level since June 2008.
But Camarota and Zeigler say that employment numbers for U.S.-born workers has still not returned to pre-recession levels, while it returned to pre-recession levels for immigrant workers in 2012 “and has continued to climb.”
Overall, the number of U.S.-born workers fell from 124,014 million in November 2007 to 122,558 million in November 2014. Foreign-born workers, who make up 17 percent of the workforce, increased from 23,104 million to 25,108 million in the same time period.
The BLS figures showed that 11 million fewer U.S.-born workers are in the labor force now compared to 2007, and that figure has not improved in the last year. Camarota and Zeigler say the numbers show there is no labor shortage, “even as many members of Congress and the president continue to support efforts to increase the level of immigration.”
A May 22 report issued by the BLS found that the 2013 unemployment rate for foreign-born workers was 6.9 percent, compared to a 7.5 percent jobless rate for U.S.-born workers. Hispanics made up nearly 48 percent of the foreign-born labor force in 2013, the BLS found.
Foreign-born workers, the agency said, were more likely to be employed in service occupations, rather than “management, professional and related occupations and in sales and office occupations.” Congress in 2015 is likely to take on immigration reform in a piecemeal approach, rather than one comprehensive package, according to GOP lawmakers who will run both the House and Senate.
While border security will be a primary focus, lawmakers may also consider increasing visas for both low- and highly-skilled workers. They may also debate an expanded program for immigrant agricultural workers, known as a guest worker program, as well as a plan to legalize the 11 million people now living here illegally.
The issue has divided the GOP, with some conservatives arguing the move will depress wages and raise unemployment rates for U.S.-born workers and put an unmanageable strain on federal subsidies.