U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) the authority that would conduct H1B announced today that it reached the cap limit for the H1B Petitions for the year 2016.
USCIS started receiving H1B applications for 2017 quota on April 1st. As of today (Apt 7th), it received enough number of applications based on Cap limits. But, USCIS have not announced the number of applications it received. USCIS has 65,000 H1B visas available in Regular Quota and 20,000 visas available in Advanced degree quota.
USCIS will complete the data data entry for the applications it received in next few weeks before it announces lottery. Computerized lottery to pick the petitions will usually be done by april 10th and H1B lottery decisions will be started around April 11th onwards.
2,33,000 applications were received last year which is historically high in the H1B history. There is less competition this year due to the H4-EAD rule - Most of the h4 candidates are preferring to use EAD over H1B. Irrespective of the competition aroung 2,00,000 applications where expected.