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Washington - Investigation: Banks In Bailout Money Sought Foreign Workers

Published on: February 1, 2009 08:38 AM
By: AP
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Washington - Banks collecting billions of dollars in federal bailout money sought government permission to bring thousands of foreign workers to the U.S. for high-paying jobs, according to an Associated Press review of visa applications.

The dozen banks receiving the biggest rescue packages, totaling more than $150 billion, requested visas for more than 21,800 foreign workers over the past six years for positions that included senior vice presidents, corporate lawyers, junior investment analysts and human resources specialists. The average annual salary for those jobs was $90,721, nearly twice the median income for all American households.

The figures are significant because they show that the bailed-out banks, being kept afloat with U.S. taxpayer money, actively sought to hire foreign workers instead of American workers. As the economic collapse worsened last year — with huge numbers of bank employees laid off — the numbers of visas sought by the dozen banks in AP’s analysis increased by nearly one-third, from 3,258 in fiscal 2007 to 4,163 in fiscal 2008.

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The AP reviewed visa applications the banks filed with the Labor Department under the H-1B visa program, which allows temporary employment of foreign workers in specialized-skill and advanced-degree positions.

It is unclear how many foreign workers the banks actually hired; the government does not release those details. The actual number is likely a fraction of the 21,800 foreign workers the banks sought to hire because the government limits the number of visas it grants to 85,000 each year among all U.S. employers.

During the last three months of 2008, the largest banks that received taxpayer loans announced more than 100,000 layoffs. The number of foreign workers included among those laid off is unknown.

Foreigners are attractive hires because companies have found ways to pay them less than American workers.


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Read Comments (10)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Feb 01, 2009 at 07:47 AM Anonymous Says:

So who says slavery ended with the Emancipation Proclaimation by Obama's hero? Salary slavery and benefits slavery is alive and well. You can blame unions for some of this, but high positioned white collar workers aren't unionized. The stock holders demand dividends. We think of stock holders as big holding companies but there are plenty of grandparents out there who invest too. As long as people are the highest cost for a company, then there will be ways to lower the people cost. Either fire them, restructure salary and benefits, make them pay more for benefits, etc. that way the cost to the company goes down and the dividend "should" go up. What's the joke about all of this? When you outsource your company to India and you have zero control based on intercompany agreements that your line people cannot affect, your bottom line goes down. When a consumer of your goods requires 5 tries to get a question answered, your bottom line goes down. The cost of doing off-shore business has been proven to be greater than the costs of salaries and benefits in America. Regardless, until we base our credit and other benefits on disposable income, not gross income, there will be more financial headaches. Go Obama, please just go.

2

 Feb 01, 2009 at 09:09 AM Anonymous Says:

at first you want to be angry with the banks, but then you realize that it is Obama's insanity that is causing these gyrations. Given half a chance, plus some help from Pelosilini, and Reid it is clear he is out to destroy the country. It is as if he views America as so messed up that he has to basically start it over from scratch, using a marxist model.

3

 Feb 01, 2009 at 09:55 AM AuthenticSatmar Says:

I'm no fan of Obama, but how is this Obama's problem? This was going on in the Bush era.
What needs to happen, is that all major employers should fire everyone earning over 75,000$ and offer to rehire them at half their salary.
There is no reason why a programmer fresh out of school should be earning 150,000+. This is pure insanity, and its what's killing our economy. When the salaries come down, the costs come down too, allowing for a quicker recovery.
But of course the Demcrazi's in Washington believe that by giving ACORN billions of dollars we'll recover. The bill is nothing more than a Democratic payback and an attempt to lock in their power.
I hope that the people of the USA will revolt against the insanity, and in 2 years vote out every Congressman that supported it.

4

 Feb 01, 2009 at 09:36 AM Anonymous Says:

#1

As with all products and services, there are choices to be made based on qaulity and price.

There are call centers in India staffed with cheap nitwits and others that are highly trained so that you would never know that u are speaking with an Indian call center

5

 Feb 01, 2009 at 11:26 AM Get Government OUT of our business!!!! Says:

This is only the beginning of the Obama Socialist Plan. Do we really want the government involved in our businesses? Do we want them involved in our lives acting like BIG BROTHER monitoring what we do & how we conduct our business & our personal affairs?

What we are seeing so far is with only 1.8 TRILLION DOLLARS of government money 'invested' in our private businesses. Imagine what is to come!

Wake up & smell the coffee. Shtey Oif! Vek Oif!! Call your senators & tell them to vote NO on this or any other 'stimulus' package that is not geared ENTIRELY to the tax paying public. There can be NO money given directly to businesses. Give everyone additional tax credits on their 08 taxes. That is how money begins to flow. Any president who issued TAX CUTS no matter what party they belonged to will tell you that!

PLEASE DON'T SUPPORT THE STIMULUS BILL WHICH WILL ONLY STIMULATE THE GOVERNMENT!!!

6

 Feb 01, 2009 at 04:02 PM esther Says:

Reply to #4  
Anonymous Says:

#1

As with all products and services, there are choices to be made based on qaulity and price.

There are call centers in India staffed with cheap nitwits and others that are highly trained so that you would never know that u are speaking with an Indian call center

i don't know how many times i've spoken with an indian based call center and after several
"excuse me" and "what"'s had to hang up in frustrstion.

7

 Feb 01, 2009 at 06:07 PM Charlie Hall Says:

Reply to #5  
Get Government OUT of our business!!!! Says:

This is only the beginning of the Obama Socialist Plan. Do we really want the government involved in our businesses? Do we want them involved in our lives acting like BIG BROTHER monitoring what we do & how we conduct our business & our personal affairs?

What we are seeing so far is with only 1.8 TRILLION DOLLARS of government money 'invested' in our private businesses. Imagine what is to come!

Wake up & smell the coffee. Shtey Oif! Vek Oif!! Call your senators & tell them to vote NO on this or any other 'stimulus' package that is not geared ENTIRELY to the tax paying public. There can be NO money given directly to businesses. Give everyone additional tax credits on their 08 taxes. That is how money begins to flow. Any president who issued TAX CUTS no matter what party they belonged to will tell you that!

PLEASE DON'T SUPPORT THE STIMULUS BILL WHICH WILL ONLY STIMULATE THE GOVERNMENT!!!

Much of the stimulus bill consists of aid to states and local governments, tax cuts, and long-overdue infrastructure projects. If the stimulus bill is not approved, you will see substantial tax increases, layoffs, and service cuts in everything from police to transit. Please state what government services you are willing to forego, and what state and local taxes, you would like to see increased.

8

 Feb 01, 2009 at 06:02 PM anonymous Says:

Authentic satmar
I have been working for over 10 years in computers at some of the top firms and I don't make 150k. Noone straight out of college gets that kind of money. People should check their facts before talking.

9

 Feb 01, 2009 at 10:50 PM Get Government OUT of our business!!!! Says:

Reply to #7  
Charlie Hall Says:

Much of the stimulus bill consists of aid to states and local governments, tax cuts, and long-overdue infrastructure projects. If the stimulus bill is not approved, you will see substantial tax increases, layoffs, and service cuts in everything from police to transit. Please state what government services you are willing to forego, and what state and local taxes, you would like to see increased.

Charlie,
You obviously DID NOT read it!! There is far too much pork in this bill with govt donations to all of Obama's friends. Can you tell me why 400 MILLION is going to ACORN??

Like I said, you didnt read it so go find yourself a copy, READ IT, then come back and tell us where all the tax cuts are.

Also tell us which infrastructure projects you are talking about. No bridges are really falling (cept for the London Bridge which keeps falling) and tunnels are ok. Granted something could go wrong from time to time like a number of years ago in Minneapolis but NOTHING is really crumbling.

The economy has always been a cycle and this is nothing different. Obama has been scaring the blank out of you with his doomsday talk but overall 08 wasnt bad after all. This, despite us being told is the worst since the great depression. Acually its more like the Carter administration but who cares.

10

 Feb 02, 2009 at 09:21 AM Anonymous Says:

Your contributors wail about Acorn the biggest fraud is that bail out money is planned for theCarlyle Equity Firm and other private equity firms. The investors in these companies are millionars. KKR, Blackstone and Carlyle investors are not main street Yidden. Nobody seems to get excited about this fraud

11

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