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Immigrant workers: Pros and Cons for the US economy

Posted on April 18, 2016
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US Economy

A popular myth which refuses to die down is that immigrants affect the United States economy adversely by weaning jobs away from qualified native personnel. Many people still hold the view that overseas workers compete with US workers for the same set of jobs, despite studies disproving this fact. Many economists are aware that this is far from the truth.

Most of the immigrants do not, in any way, opt for jobs that Americans typically look for. Actually, US natives and immigrant workers complement each other, according to many researchers who have analyzed the impact immigration has had on the US. Immigrant workers, with their skill sets, in fact, enhance productivity, creating high-skilled employment opportunities for workers belonging to the US.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics, a US governmental agency, has found that most workers from outside of the US are most likely to be working in the service sector and not in sectors traditionally occupied by Americans. It implies that foreign workers are more likely to be employed in jobs other than those favored by those born in the US.

Surprisingly, immigrants have been shown not to pose a threat even to the less educated local workers. A study conducted by the Immigration Policy Center was of the view that even unemployed Americans lacking high school education do not enter the arena that is populated by immigrants. This is due to fact that the approaches of immigrants and local Americans are totally different.

So, the study demolishes an age-old belief by concluding that immigrants rather have a positive impact on the US economy, as opposed to the one perpetuated by some who hold a dissimilar view on effects of immigration.

Another economist buttresses this fact by stating that the exponential growth of legal and illegal immigrant workers in the US beginning in the early 1990s has led to the number of Americans who were economically underprivileged to come down.

Moreover, as immigrants pay taxes and consume American goods there is a definite increase in government revenue.

Various studies agree with the viewpoint that most of the jobs that new immigrants grab are the ones which were previously held by the earlier wave of immigrants. It is also being suggested by many economists that a symbiotic relationship between immigrants and local workers would, therefore, strengthen the US economy further.

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