November Jobs: Immigrants Are the (Only) Winners

Article author: 
Edwin S. Rubenstein
Article publisher: 
Article date: 
6 December 2014
Article category: 
Our American Future
Article Body: 

...“According to BLS, the job gains were universal.” Mainstream economists gushed shamelessly over the apparent good news contained in the latest jobs report. [Economists wowed by strong payrolls number By Robert Schroeder, CBS MarketWatch, December 5, 2014]...

At first glance the headline numbers seem to support them: The U.S. added 321,000 new jobs in November, the biggest gain in business payrolls in nearly three years. Unemployment held steady at 5.8%, a six year low. Virtually every industry added employees, and many of the new jobs were in fields that pay well.

But there are nagging problems. At this stage of previous recoveries, wages were growing rapidly. In 2014, despite robust job growth, hourly wages remain stuck in a rut. Wages are only up 2.1% in the past 12 months, a rate that’s barely changed since the recovery began in mid-2009...

But behind the miniscule gain in total Household employment is a significant acceleration of two trends we have often noted. Immigrants are gaining ground, while native-born Americans are losing..

In November:

  • Total employment rose by 4,000 or by less than 0.00%
  • Native-born American employment fell by166,000 or by 0.14%
  • Foreign-born employment rose by 170,000 or by 0.66%

Never during the Obama years have American workers been as whiplashed by immigrants as they were over the past four months...

Implication: Since the start of the Obama Administration as many as 2.98 million (2.03 times 1.47 million) native-born Americans may have lost jobs due to immigration...

What really catches our eye is the extraordinary differential between foreign-born and native-born population growth. Since last November the foreign-born population of working age grew by 1.29 million, or by 3.3%, according to the BLS, while the comparable native-born population rose by 987,000 – a gain of just 0.5%.

Two points are worth making. First, should these growth rates persist, the foreign-born population of working-age will double in about 22 years. It will take a whopping 144 years for the native-born population to match that. By then, of course, immigrants will dominate the U.S. workforce.

Secondly, the increase in the foreign-born working-age population over the past year (1.29 million) exceeds the number of legal immigrants admitted annually, which has been running at about 1 million. Obvious implication: A strong U.S. job market is drawing illegals into country. Contra President Obama, the news is not a “very welcome sign for millions of Americans”, but a “very welcome sign” for millions of immigrant workers, many of them illegal.

If history is any guide, President Obama’s administrative order of amnesty will widen the gap between foreign-born and American-born population growth.