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H-1Bs: How Do They Stack Up to US Born Workers?

Author

Listed:
  • Lofstrom, Magnus

    () (Public Policy Institute of California)

  • Hayes, Joseph

    () (Public Policy Institute of California)

Abstract

Combining unique individual level H-1B data from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and data from the 2009 American Community Survey, we analyze earnings differences between H-1B visa holders and US born workers in STEM occupations. The data indicate that H-1Bs are younger and more skilled, as measured by education, than US born workers in the same occupations. We fail to find support for the notion that H-1Bs are paid less that observationally similar US born workers; in fact, they appear to have higher earnings in some key STEM occupations, including information technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Lofstrom, Magnus & Hayes, Joseph, 2011. "H-1Bs: How Do They Stack Up to US Born Workers?," IZA Discussion Papers 6259, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6259
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    Cited by:

    1. Sari Pekkala Kerr & William R. Kerr & William F. Lincoln, 2015. "Skilled Immigration and the Employment Structures of US Firms," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(S1), pages 147-186.
    2. Chad Sparber, 2015. "The Value of H-1B Status in Times of Scarcity," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1510, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
    3. Sari Pekkala Kerr & William R. Kerr & William F. Lincoln, 2015. "Firms and the Economics of Skilled Immigration," Innovation Policy and the Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 115-152.
    4. Clifford, Robert, 2014. "Demand for H-1B visas in New England: an analysis of employer requests for highly-skilled guest workers," New England Public Policy Center Policy Reports 14-1, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    5. repec:anr:reveco:v:9:y:2017:p:201-234 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Sari Pekkala Kerr & William Kerr & Çağlar Özden & Christopher Parsons, 2017. "High-Skilled Migration and Agglomeration," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 9(1), pages 201-234, September.
    7. William R. Kerr, 2013. "U.S. High-Skilled Immigration, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship: Empirical Approaches and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 19377, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Abdurrahman Aydemir, 2013. "Skill-based immigrant selection and labor market outcomes by visa category," Chapters,in: International Handbook on the Economics of Migration, chapter 23, pages 432-452 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Briggs Depew & Peter Norlander & Todd A. Sørensen, 2017. "Inter-firm mobility and return migration patterns of skilled guest workers," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(2), pages 681-721, April.
    10. Jennifer Hunt, 2013. "Are Immigrants the Best and Brightest U.S. Engineers?," NBER Working Papers 18696, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    temporary workers; H-1B; immigration; high-skill; STEM;

    JEL classification:

    • J8 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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