Integrity Florida, the nonpartisan research institute and government watchdog, released a new report today that examines minimum wage policy in state and local governments and the effect that increases in the wage have on employment.
The research report does not take a position on either side of the ongoing minimum wage debate. Rather, it seeks to add independent and unbiased context to that debate and answer the question “does increasing the minimum wage result in job loss?”
“We wanted to take an objective look at the claim made by some that an increase in the minimum wage means employers will cut jobs,” said Ben Wilcox, Research Director for Integrity Florida. “Our research found no evidence that claim is true.”
The report contains three major components: (1) a review of existing studies on the issue; (2) comparing job growth in states that have raised the minimum wage since January 1, 2014, with states that have not; and (3) comparing the current number of jobs in cities and counties where a minimum wage increase has been in effect at least a year with the number of jobs before the raise went into effect. The research is based on employment numbers provided by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“We found no evidence of job loss in states, counties and cities where the minimum wage has increased,” said researcher Alan Stonecipher. “Everywhere we looked there were only varying degrees of employment gains.”
- The preponderance of research finds that raising the minimum wage does not cause job loss.
- Economists cite several reasons why increases in the minimum wage, which raise employers’ cost, generally do not cost jobs.
- In the 25 states plus the District of Columbia where the minimum wage has increased since January 1, 2014, through recently in 2015, job growth has been higher than in states where the rate did not go up.
- Similarly, in all of the five cities and counties where increases in the minimum wage had been in effect for more than a year, the number of jobs has grown.
- The results of the state and city case studies do not prove that a higher minimum wage results in job growth. But the results provide no indication that a higher minimum wage is associated with job losses.
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