November 17, 2005

TAKING ALL THE GOOD JOBS:

Report: Immigrants may not hurt wages (JESSICA HOLZER, 11/16/05, Houston Chronicle)

There is no clear evidence that an influx of immigrant workers hurts the earnings of U.S.-born workers over the long term, the Congressional Budget Office director told a House committee Wednesday.

"It might seem obvious that the arrival of immigrants would lower the wages of native workers," Douglas Holtz-Eakin said, but "the ultimate impact is very difficult to quantify."

The economy adjusts to the new workers, the report found.

Businesses make capital investments as immigrants become available to work, while native workers may choose to pursue more education to compete better in the job market.


If it weren't for Mexicans depressing the wages Tom Tancredo and Pat Buchanan would have realized their childhood dreams of being landscapers.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 17, 2005 5:18 PM
Comments

It's very weird though that the aggregate benefits of free trade are not questioned like the aggregate effects on labor from immigration.

The US has a highly developed economy precisely because our labor prices have been high thus promoting capital investment, spurring technological development and greater economic growth. If the country is pursuing a low labor cost model of growth, we should be very, very, very scared.

Posted by: Chris Durnell at November 18, 2005 11:38 AM
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