Sunday, August 01, 2010

Debate on H-1B Visas

The Arizona Republic has a good article on H-1B visas in today's paper. It is worth a read especially with the immigration debate going on here in the state.

One of the questions is whether we need the visas at all. If US companies can't find enough qualified graduates here in the US, it would seem that a simple increase in salaries for those positions would fix the problem in a few years. A higher future income would induce more students to get the necessary education and training.

On the other hand (yes I am a two handed economist) if the wage goes up significantly in the US, then international companies will merely move the work offshore. Offshore design centers are already the norm for many of the businesses.

On a net basis, I'm not sure whether raising salaries would increase or decrease the total number of jobs held by Americans.

Once you've got the H-1B visas, then you have to deal with the unintended consequences. Both employers and employees get locked in while trying to secure a green card, and this reduces labor market flexibility.

I don't see any good options here.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The AZ Republic article read more like an Immigration Lawyers Association press release than a balanced article.

I hope you'll review the following.

August 1, 2010 at 9:23:00 PM MST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't agree with you that the AZR article was good or well done. It was a very biased and one-sided view of the H-1B issue.

This article completely debunks the Yantis article and one that was recently done in eWeek.

Media Buzz on Increasing H-1B

August 3, 2010 at 3:49:00 PM MST  
Blogger Michael Guzzo said...

One can avoid that whole H-1B problem just by getting their flu shot this year.

Oh wait, that's H1N1. My bad.

September 9, 2010 at 12:04:00 AM MST  

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