Indian Job Shop Infosys Gets Another Black Eye as Share Price Drops

By David North on October 23, 2019

Here are some of the characteristics of Infosys, the big Indian outsourcing firm:

  • It uses the H-1B program, on a massive scale, to avoid hiring U.S. workers;
  • It had to pay millions to U.S. whistleblower Jack Palmer when he caught them using workers on tourist visas — with bigger savings than hiring H-1B workers;
  • Within the discrimination in favor of Indian rather than U.S. workers, it has a strong bias in favor of hiring young, male Indians from the southern part of the country, the most Hindu part of that nation; and
  • As a result of these practices, it makes more than $1 billion a year from its U.S. operations.

Most recently a (presumably) India-based whistleblower has charged Infosys management with cooking its financial books and, as a result, the company's common stock lost 14 percent of its value on October 22.

So, Infosys not only cheats U.S. workers, Indian women, Indian Muslims, and its own staff using tourist visas, it has added its own stockholders and potential stockholders to its ever-growing list of victims.

The latest whistleblower could not have tooted his (or her) toot in a better place.

My colleague Dan Cadman and I have often written about Infosys misbehaviors in the U.S. labor market and the way it seemingly avoids government regulation. Infosys plays a major role in the H-1B program, filing the largest number of worker applications with the Labor Department in 2017 with 25,405; currently it is in fourth place nationally in terms of applications filed. Given the ceiling on H-1B workers, filing 25,000 applications produces about 8,000 actual workers.

The Indian website Techxplore wrote that Infosys' top officials "asked executives not to fully disclose US visa costs in a bid to boost short-term profits."

As I reported on July 31, I have a small brokerage account managed by Gilder, Gagnon, and Howe, and that the prescient firm sold Infosys short at the time – good call!