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National Data | June Jobs: Have Hispanics Hit the Wall?
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July 08, 2008, 05:12 PM
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The U.S. economy shed 62,000 jobs in June while the unemployment rate unexpectedly remained at a four-year high of 5.5%. Payrolls have now fallen in all six months this year for a total job loss of 438,000, the strongest evidence that the economy fell into a recession. The Household survey, which identifies employment trends by race and ethnicity, reports a significantly larger June job loss, with Hispanics bearing the brunt:

  • Total Employment fell 155,000 (-0.19%)
  • Non-Hispanic employment fell 2,000 (-0.002%)
  • Hispanic employment fell 153,000 (-0.744%)

While the unemployment rate for white workers stayed at 4.9%, and that of Blacks declined to 9.2% from 9.7%, Hispanic unemployment increased to 7.7% from a 6.9% reading in May. The number of unemployed Hispanics grew by 182,000, or by 11.9%. VDARE.com’s American Worker Displacement Index (VDAWDI), calculated as the ratio of Hispanic to non-Hispanic job growth indexes during the Bush years, fell to 122.8 in June– its the largest decline since January. Since peaking in August, VDAWDI has encountered upside resistance: Our general economic funk undoubtedly plays a role, dissuading legals as well as illegals from coming to these parts. But there are plenty of reasons to suspect that a diminished influx of illegal workers is playing the larger role. At 700 miles in length, the border fence finally appears to be staunching rather than merely redistributing the inflow from Mexico. The Border Patrol reports a 17% drop in apprehensions, year-on-year, for the six months ending in March. This is on top of last year’s 20% fall. Arrests at the southern border are roughly half of the level seen in 2000, when 1.64 million arrests were made. Plenty are still getting through, but they do not appear to be flourishing. As evidence, just look at remittances. After years of unbroken growth, the amount of money sent south by Mexicans working in the U.S. is falling. In the first quarter of this year the year-on-year cash flow is down by 2.9%, according to Goldman Sachs. Overarching everything are state laws (passed in Arizona and Oklahoma, under consideration in other states) that make it illegal to employ illegal aliens, and more aggressive efforts by federal authorities to arrest illegal workers and their employers. In prior years illegals apprehended at the border would have been sent back. Expedited removal was the euphemism. This year there is room to detain, prosecute, and formally deport them. At least for now the revolving door is stuck.