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Immigrants - Essay Example

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The issue of immigrants and whether their position is taking away jobs and reducing the wage of native workers has been one of great spectacle and controversy over the years. President Bush's proposal in January 2004 to reform the U.S. immigration system reignited an already strained debate that had been dormant in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks…
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Download file to see previous pages... The extent that immigrants are taking jobs away from native workers, as well as the impacts they are having on the wages of natives are of great concern and significance, and advocates on opposing sides of the immigration debate are well armed with statistics responding to such issues. The extensive research which has been conducted about the economic impact of immigrants is incredibly complex and much of it has shortcomings. In order to come to a clearer and more knowledgeable understanding on this subject matter, the following questions must be addressed:
By thoroughly discussing these two questions, we can come to a critically more intellectual viewpoint on this subject of interest. The aim of this paper is to discuss all of this, as well as any and all key elements in relation to this issue. This is what will be dissertated in the following.
Academic studies have been done for years in an attempt to assess the extent to which immigration affects the earnings of U.S. workers. Over the past decade, empirical research has found that immigrant earnings growth is remarkably rapid, and surprisingly enough, the cross-section studies find that the relative earnings of immigrants grow so rapidly that after ten to fifteen years immigrants earnings actually do overtake the earnings of native workers. It has been found "The result that, in the long run, immigrants earn more than natives was explained by assuming that immigrants earn more than natives was explained by assuming that immigrants are a relatively select group of individuals whose average 'quality' exceeds that of the typical native worker." (Borjas, 1989). Recent work (Borjas, 1985) raises serious doubts about the validity of the inferences drawn from the cross-section empirical results, considering that cross-section estimates of immigration assimilation are biased if emigration (i.e., return migration) is not randomly distributed across the immigrant population or if the quality of successive immigrant cohorts changed over the sample period.
The most extensive study of this subject released to date, in fact, is an August 2003 report by Pia M. Orrenius and Madeline Zavodny, researchers at the Federal Reserve Banks of Dallas and Atlanta, respectively. Their conclusions were as follows:
For service-related and professional workers, immigration has had little impact on wages. If anything, increases in the number of newly arriving immigrants actually have slightly positive effects.
For manual laborers, increases in the share of newly arrived immigrants have no statistically significant negative impact on wages; but increases in the share of immigrants who adjust their immigration status after they have been in the United States - for example, from student or tourist visas (which do not permit employment) to green cards - have a small negative effect.
The annual wages of low-skilled native workers are about 2.4 percent below where they would be otherwise as a result of the presence of immigrant workers.
There are certainly extremely opposing ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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