Monday, November 1, 2010


A recently published study, “Immigration, Offshoring and American Jobs”, published by two economics professors at Bocconi University in Italy and the University of California, Davis, concludes that the continuing arrival of immigrants to America is encouraging business activity, thereby producing more jobs.
The study notes that when companies move production offshore, they take away not only low-wage jobs but also many related jobs, which include high-skilled managers, tech repairmen and others. When companies hire immigrants even for low-wage jobs, they usually keep the operations in the United States, which includes many other positions. In fact, when immigrant workforce is rising as a share of employment in an economic sector, offshoring tends to be falling, and vice versa. Thus, offshoring is much worse to the American economy than immigrants, who create more jobs or keep more jobs here.
The study found that American economic sectors with larger exposure to immigrant workforce fared better in employment growth than those who had lesser exposure, even for low-skilled labor.
Even the lower-skilled immigrants fill gaps in American labor markets and generally enhance domestic business prospects rather than destroy jobs. That is because of the lower paid immigrants being “complementary” workers, who add value to the work of others. An immigrant will often take a job as a construction worker, a drywall installer, for example, while a native-born worker may end up being promoted to supervisor. Also, as immigrants succeed here, they help the U.S. develop stronger business relations with other counties (for example in Asia and Latin America), again creating more jobs.

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