Federal Reserve Governor Christopher Waller Monday said a shortfall of about 1.5 million immigrants into the U.S. relative to normal is adding heat to an already hot labor market.
"We're short somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.5 million immigrant workers from where we would normally have been. There's like four million visa applications for immigrant labor to come in," Waller said at a Fed Listens event in Nashville, Tennessee, alongside Atlanta Fed president Rpahael Bostic. "The immigrant labor issue is a big deal," Waller said.
The Fed Governor reiterated that the central bank is on a path to raise the fed funds rate and shrink the balance sheet "to cool off demand in the economy," he said. "The tricky part is going to be can we do that without causing big problems on the real side in terms of employment, production, things like that."