These figures from the National Science Foundation buttress the case for a higher limit on H-1B visas.
The overall unemployment rate of scientists and engineers in the United States dropped from 3.2% in 2003 to 2.5% in 2006 (figure 1), according to data from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Scientists and Engineers Statistical Data System (SESTAT). This is the lowest unemployment rate measured by SESTAT since the early 1990s. It continues a trend of lower unemployment rates for scientists and engineers compared with unemployment rates in the rest of the U.S. economy. Comparable unemployment rates for the entire U.S. labor force in 2003 and 2006 were 6.0% and 4.7%, respectively. (See “Data Comments and Availability” for the definition of scientists and engineers and other variables and for notes on SESTAT.
James Sherk at the Heritage Foundation has authored a new issue paper that rebuts the arguments of those opposed to H-1B visas. The conclusion:
Contrary to the claims of immigration opponents, H-1B workers are highly skilled workers with vitally needed skills. H-1B workers are highly educated. Almost half have an advanced degree. The median H-1B worker earns 90 percent more than the median U.S. worker. They are in no way average workers.
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