Am I right in thinking that the reason we have high immigration and high unemployment/underemployment is because of skills shortages in specific sectors such as engineering, poor wages and conditions for many agricultural/manual labour jobs and poor education for some areas like IT and computing?
That's the long and the short of it, yes. Worth giving specific mention to the lack of flexibility in the education and training infrastructure which means we're always about three years behind the current employment trends but hey, that's what happens when you aspire to send everyone 18-21 away to study at university for three years rather than encouraging internships and on-the-job training.
There are numerous studies which show immigration negatively affecting British workers and causing more unemployment for British nationals. I'm on my sh*tty PS4 web browser right now, and I can't do links
Then I await these links with bated breath.
I know Migration Watch UK and the National Institute of Economic and Social Research have published reports confirming that this is true.
Migration watch, as in the anti-immigration think tank? On the basis of their stated aims as an organisation I doubt their impartiality on the subject.
If the paper published by NIESR you're referencing is "The long term economic impacts of reducing migration" (http://niesr.ac.uk/b...on#.VKw7_nNFDqA
) then it says nothing to corroborate your argument. Please allow me to quote from it selectively:
As an experiment, we chose the migration target set by the senior partner of the current UK coalition government (the Conservative Party) to reduce the level of net migration from hundreds of thousands to tens of thousands. Our estimates show that the long term impact of this policy will be to significantly reduce GDP per capita and worsen the public finances. While gross wages increase slightly, the resulting increase in taxes means after-tax wages also fall.
Our results show that a significant reduction in net migration has strong negative effects on the economy. First, by 2060 in the low migration scenario aggregate GDP decreases by 11% and GDP per person by 2.7% compared to the baseline scenario (see Figure 1). Second, this policy has a significant negative impact on public finances, owing to the shift in the demographic structure after the shock. The total level of government spending expressed as a share of GDP increases by 1.4 percentage points by 2060. This effect requires an increase in the effective labour income tax rate for the government to balance its budget in every period. By 2060 the required increase is 2.2 percentage points. Third, the effect of the higher labour income tax rate is felt at the household level, with average households' net income declining because of the higher income tax despite the initial increase in gross wages due to lower labour supply. By 2060 net wage is 3.3% lower in the low migration scenario.
There are also reports which suggest the opposite, but they tend to selectively choose and measure their data. Common example being that they count immigrants that have been living here for 5 years as British, which has the double falsity of boosting the British jobs figures and reducing the figures of immigrants with jobs. Which is just 1 way they completely misrepresent the facts.
On what basis do you make these allegations? I have seen nothing of the sort in any of the papers I've ever read on the subject.
How does it work then according to you then? I'm sorry but if you have a limited number of jobs, with more people than jobs, I fail to see how if you THEN add even more people to the job market that that somehow that helps. It's simple supply and demand. You're just increasing the demand for jobs, but not meeting that demand with an increased supply.
There are several fundamental mistakes in the logic you employ here:
1) Employment doesn't function on the basis of simple supply and demand. An individual being employed in a role does not, generally speaking, "remove" a job from the job market. Indeed, employment tends to create more jobs than it occupies; increasing economic growth results in increased employment, which results in higher production which, as long as there's sufficient demand, will create additional employment in the supply chain and in some cases in an aftercare environment. Immigration in and of itself creates jobs. Therefore the notion that there is even a finite number of jobs in an economy is flawed.
2) There aren't "more people than jobs" in the UK. In fact, there are numerous sectors which are dramatically undersupplied with jobs. The fact immigration is increasing and yet levels of unemployment are declining is fundamentally incompatible with the notion of a saturated job market.
I don't get how having lots of vacant roles means there isn't a big shortage of jobs and a saturated jobs market.There's always going to be lots of jobs available at any given time, because vacancies don't get filled immediately and because new jobs are inevitably going to be created even during the worst of economic downturns.
If this were the case you'd expect to see relatively steady unemployment rates from quarter to quarter, but that's simply not reflected in reality:
The long-term trends are pretty telling here.
The number of unemployed is still very high though and there is still too many applicants for every job available.
The percentage of unemployed in the UK is 6% currently. That's lower than almost anywhere in Europe. And it's continuing to drop. It's not going to be long until were matching the ~5% unemployment of the lowest-of-the-low, pre-recession period. And, as I've already said, there aren't "too many applicants" for every job. Yes, there are some sectors of the economy which are highly oversubscribed. But similarly, other sectors are hugely under-subscribed, including massive growth sectors like the one I work in. We have to bring in foreign talent because there just aren't enough domestic citizens with the requisite skills and experience. So yeah, not "every job" by any stretch of the imagination.
The population is at the highest it's ever been, so you'd expect employment to be near the highest it's ever been.
Why, given that employment is a percentage of the total population?
The figures don't represent the truth though, because the government uses millions and millions being on very low hours or even 0 hours contracts to contribute to employment figures.
Zero hour contract holders only represent about 1.5% of total roles. And foreign nationals are proportionally more likely to be on casual or zero-hour working contracts than domestic citizens.