Cape Cod Proving George Borjas Right: Reduced Immigration Protects Jobs, Lift Wages For Americans

Article author: 
Hank Johnson
Article publisher: 
Article date: 
Monday, July 25, 2022
Article category: 
National Issues
Article Body: 

Wages look a lot better for local workers on Cape Cod this summer because the number of foreign workers has collapsed, which, with a low unemployment rate nationwide, caused a labor shortage, boosting wages exactly as Harvard economist George Borjas has long predicted [Yes, Immigration Hurts American Workers, by George Borjas, Politico Magazine, September 1, 2016].

I visited Cape Cod a couple of weeks ago and saw a Starbucks ad in a local newspaper. The globe-straddling coffee emporium offered workers a seasonal bonus rate of $5 an hour at several locations. The reason: It can’t get enough employees. Instead of offering $14.25 an hour to cashiers, Starbucks will pay $19.25. If the Cape had its normal influx of low-wage temporary workers from countries where many people earn under five figures per year, it’s hard to imagine that the company would offer the same wage. . . .