Information Technology Stocks Fall On Fears Over H-1B Visa Restrictions

Information technology stocks were the top losers on the NSE Nifty 50 index after lawmakers reintroduced a bill in the U.S. Congress to curb the use of H-1B visas.

The ‘Protect and Grow American Jobs Act’ proposes changes to the H-1B visa regime, including increasing the minimum salary to $100,000 per annum and eliminating the masters degree exemption, according to the Press Trust of India. The proposed changes will adversely impact the earnings of Indian information technology companies with large exposure to the U.S.

If the minimum salary increases to $100,000 per annum from the current $75,000 per annum, margins of I.T. companies will be hit by 20 to 40 basis points, according to brokerage firm Edelweiss Securities’ estimates released on December 13.

Indian I.T. companies have had a mixed run since Donald Trump won the U.S. elections on November 8. While Infosys Ltd. has declined by 1 percent, peers like Tata Consultancy Services Ltd., HCL Technologies Ltd., Tech Mahindra Ltd. and Wipro Ltd. have all gained between 0.5 and 5 percent.

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