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High-tech visa quota filled in 5 days

Even as the US Labor Department reported lackluster hiring of American workers, demand for visas for highly skilled foreign workers has exploded, rising to the highest level in five years.

On Friday, the US Citizenship and Immigration Service said it had received enough requests to easily fill its annual quota for H-1B visas — now set at 85,000 — just five days after opening the application window. That is the fastest since 2008, when it took just one day to meet the quota.

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