Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Displacement effect

What Jonathan Portes doesn't tell you, in this article on migrants in today's Guardian, is that there is a displacement effect on benefits claimants caused by migration.

The arrival of three million cheapo foreign workers soaks up the employment opportunities in the United Kingdom. 

Good for employers who get dirt cheap employees they can discard when they no longer need them.  Good for the Labour party as they are laying down voting fodder for the future.  But a disaster for NEETs and the long-term unemployed who are forced onto benefits because the low-skill jobs have all gone (unless they care to compete with the migrants in a race to the bottom in terms of wages and conditions).

Jonathan Portes is Director of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research. 

From an on-line biography:  Before joining NIESR, Jonathan Portes served as Chief Economist at the UK Cabinet Office, where he advised the Cabinet Secretary, Gus O’Donnell, and Number 10 Downing Street on economic and financial issues. Prior to that, he was Chief Economist at the Department for Work and Pension, and Director for Child Poverty.  He is currently a Specialist Adviser to the House of Lords Committee on Public Service and Demographic Change.  He is a member of advisory committees at a number of economic research institutes and is a Trustee of the Coram Foundation, the UK's longest established children's charity.

His career is a case study in how unelected unrepresentative individuals controlled migration policy in the Labour government 1997 to 2010.

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