Dec 20, 2014 – News Today

Laura Jones: Fa-la-la-la economics and the minimum wage

The B.C. Federation of Labour called this week for a $15-an-hour minimum wage, a 46-per-cent increase over the current $10.25 an hour and $4 higher than anywhere else in North America. It might sound like a good idea but unless your objective is scoring political points or pushing for higher union wages, it’s not. If your objective is to help those in need, there are better ways. Numerous studies show increasing the minimum wage does not reduce poverty, although this may seem counterintuitive. Most workers who benefit from a minimum-wage increase do not live in poor households: the teen living at home and working part-time, for example, or the restaurant server earning minimum wage but making great tips. In addition, many studies show when the minimum wage increases, the ensuing job losses and reduced work hours out-weigh the increase in hourly wages. Read More