The study examines the early market experience of recent immigrants to Israel from the former Soviet Union (FSU) and their mobility patterns a few years after migration. The Labour Utilization Framework, proposed by Clogg and Sullivan (1983), was analysed to identify the employment difficulties immigrants experienced upon arrival, their short-term mobility in the labour market, and the income consequences of their disadvantaged position in the market. Using a panel study of immigrants who arrived in Israel during 1990, we found that although most of them found employment, only a minority did not experience employment hardships. Four years after their arrival, most immigrants were still employed in occupations for which they were over-qualified, and only a small portion of the group managed to find adequate employment. Women had more severe employment hardships and a lower rate of mobility into the better positions. For men and women alike, almost any deviation from a stable adequate employment entailed wage penalties.