According to CBS's breakdown of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development numbers which calculated the labor force participation rate, there are a combined 25 million immigrants working in the U.S. today. Among them are legal, temporary, refugee and undocumented immigrants that data cannot properly divide. 

With that in mind, here are some slightly surprising statistics that make sense after you wrap your head around existing factors, like complacency and being born into an easier situation. 

The percentage of foreign adults in the workforce is higher than that of native-born adults

73.4% of immigrants vs. 71.1% of native born are employed or actively looking for a job.

Immigrants earn less than native-born with the pay gap increasing as the population ages

The wages of younger immigrants compared to those of native-born individuals are nearly comparable, but then discrepancies arise according to age and gender.

Educated immigrants earn more than native-born workers with comparable degrees 

Immigrants with college degrees earn 2.8% more than native-born workers with a similar level of education.

Immigrants are more likely to own businesses than native-born Americans

10.5% vs. 9.3% - an immigrant is roughly 10% more likely to own a business than a native-born person.

For every 10,000 immigrants in the U.S., 62 will start a business

That's more than double the rate of a native-born individual.

Immigrants were involved in founding one-quarter of the companies that went public between 1990 and 2005

What's more, one-third of the companies that went public between 2006 and 2012 had at least one immigrant founder.

Of the 87 privately held companies currently valued at over $1 billion, 51% had immigrant founders.

Why could this be? Well for one, immigrants could be more invested in "the American Dream" of pulling themselves up by their bootstraps after getting here while native-born are born into more comfortable situations. Immigrants define "success" differently. Native-born workers are more likely to work in sales, business and financial operations, office support or social service jobs.

Now on to unauthorized immigrant's, Trump's favorite topic. According to Pew Research, in 2014 unauthorized immigrants held 9% of service jobs, a larger percentage than their overall 5% of our nation's workforce. They only made up 2% each of management, professional and office support workers versus the 85% of employed native-born workers. 

Their professions can be roughly broken down as follows — 

Drywall installers - 31%

Agricultural workers - 30%

Roofers 29%

Construction painters 26%

Brick masons 25%


In these politically volatile times, it's easier for our raw emotions to get the better of us, but you need to look at the factors that determine America's success from all sides.

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