From the article: Proponents of restraining immigration, particularly among low-skill workers, often argue that newcomers can supplant American workers or depress their wages, even if they help the economy as a whole. Companies have to compete less to hire when there are more workers around. But the evidence supporting that argument is limited.
In one study, the Harvard economist George Borjas examined how a group of Cubans who went to Miami in 1980 affected the local labor market. He found that native-born workers who had dropped out of high school took a wage hit when the newcomers arrived. But that research has been the subject of a fierce debate over data choices — several different economists have argued that with a different design, the pay effects disappear.
Other research, by Giovanni Peri at the University of California, Davis, suggests that lower-skill immigrants complement their American counterparts, actually lifting wages. Immigrants are more entrepreneurial, other studies have found, and at higher education levels, they contribute a big share of the United States’ science, technology and math work force.
This article relates closely to this month's Immigration Fact.
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