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The H-1B Visa Program: A Primer on the Program and its Impact on Jobs, Wages, and the Economy

Washington D.C.– Today, the American Immigration Council releases The H-1B Visa Program: A Primer on the Program and its Impact on Jobs, Wages, and the Economy. This fact sheet provides an overview of the visa and application process and discusses the important role that H-1B workers play in our economy.

Today also marks the day that U.S. employers seeking highly skilled foreign professionals can start submitting their petitions for H-1B visas. If recent history is any indication, the available pool of H-1Bs will run dry in a matter of days. The statutory limit for H-1Bs stands at 65,000 for new hires, plus an additional 20,000 for foreign professionals who earn a graduate degree from a U.S. university. This numerical cap, which dates back to 1990, falls far short of demand—which is unfortunate given the contributions that H-1B workers make to the U.S. economy. H-1B workers are associated with higher wages and lower unemployment for native-born workers—and they add billions of dollars to the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
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