University of California, Irvine Professor of Economics David Neumark and Federal Reserve Board Division of Research and Statistics Associate Director William Wascher have a new book, Minimum Wages, examine nearly two decades of evidence on the effects of minimum wage laws and conclude:
Based on their comprehensive reading of the evidence, Neumark and Wascher argue that minimum wages do not achieve the main goals set forth by their supporters. They reduce employment opportunities for less-skilled workers and tend to reduce their earnings; they are not an effective means of reducing poverty; and they appear to have adverse longer-term effects on wages and earnings, in part by reducing the acquisition of human capital. The authors argue that policymakers should instead look for other tools to raise the wages of low-skill workers and to provide poor families with an acceptable standard of living.
We’ve heard some of these arguments before:
Minimum Wage Workers’ Incomes Rise When the Minimum Wage Does Not