Jobs & Wages: How Immigrants Help Americans and the Economy

May 27, 2016—Ben Powell, director of the Free Market Institute at Texas Tech University and Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute, busts three myths used as arguments to advance more big government regulation of immigration.

“Immigrants are a net benefit to the economy,” Powell says, diffusing the widespread uneconomic views held by many Americans.

The fear that immigrants take away jobs from Americans “is a fallacy of the seen and unseen,” he continued in a video produced by Learn Liberty, a project of the Institute for Humane Studies.

“Think about what’s happened to the workforce in the last 60 years, massive entry of baby boomers, women, and immigrants into the workforce, but yet no long-term increase in unemployment.”

“The only wage depression that economists find is when you look at just people without a high school diploma in the United States, and even there, the negative effect on their wages is very small, and the reason is, immigrant labor is different than the domestic labor. They bring a different skill set.”

“Often, immigrants who come are either highly-skilled or very low-skilled. A lot of US labor is somewhere in the middle.”