Immigration and Its (Non-)Effect on Wages, v.3

By April 15, 2006General

The WaPo weighs in again on the effect of immigration on wages. However, once again, the WaPo isn’t reading the WaPo. You might have seen our post a week or so ago, quoting the Post editorial — correctly — on the non-effect of immigration on wages. We supplemented that piece with one from Diana Fuchtgott-Roth saying essentially the same, and backing it up with a host of studies. As the WaPo pointed out in its editorial, folks who disagree (like ABC News) all point to one study — by a Mr. Borjas — from Harvard. But his study has been debunked, as Furchtgott-Roth points out in her piece and as the WaPo also noted.

Nonetheless, today’s WaPo article entitled, “Effect of Immigration on Jobs, Wages is Difficult for Economists to Nail Down“, writer Nell Henderson cites Borjas and lands far from the mark, and from the WaPo’s own editorial view. In fact, as you’ll see from the pieces cited above, it’s not difficult for economists to nail down, and it’s not much of an effect.

Join the discussion One Comment

  • Dave Meyer says:

    Mr. Cleary,

    Just fyi, when the news page and the editorial page conflict, the news page is typically more reliable.

    The work of card et al. contradicts the vast majority of orthodox economic models. I hope your willingness to champion empirical economic work extends to other areas, where the interests might not be so clear to the business community. (by the way — why is NAM so interested in immigration if not to keep down labor costs and substitute immigrant labor for native labor?)