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Companies Say Trump Is Hurting Business by Limiting Legal Immigration

Mr. Verma, his wife and their 9-year-old son plan to be living in Toronto by the time their American visas expire in the second week of September.

He is taking advantage of the Global Talent Stream initiative the Canadian government started last year. It lets companies in innovative fields, like artificial intelligence, quickly secure visas for workers with vital skills.

With experience with A.I. programming tools, Mr. Verma got a visa in two weeks, and could become a permanent resident in six months or so.

His employer, Kira Systems, makes software that reads and analyzes legal contracts. The company has more than doubled its employment in the past year, to 115 people. Noah Waisberg, a co-founder and the chief executive, said half of Kira’s technical staff was from China, India, Russia and other countries.

Canada has long welcomed immigrants. “But that is even more so relative to the United States, given the climate in America now,” Mr. Waisberg said. “It’s certainly helped us recruit.”

Mr. Trump’s “hire American” push is helping some domestic businesses. One of those is Nexient, which provides software services and competes with firms in India and elsewhere. Fearful of becoming too dependent on offshore firms, corporate customers are increasingly interested in having domestic partners, said Mark Orttung, Nexient’s chief executive.

“You still have to win the business, but it has been an accelerator for us,” he said.

Nexient is based in Newark, Calif., but its programmers are mainly in Michigan and Indiana. The start-up employs more than 500 people, up from 400 last year.