Minimum Wage Impact

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Satoria Mckenzy Principals of Economics (Ref # 380267) Spring 2013 The Full Economic Impact of an Increase in the Minimum Wage Where minimum began - The history of minimum wage, what is minimum wage, the laws of minimum wage. The minimum wage has a strong social appeal, rooted in concern about the ability of markets to provide income equity for the least able members of the work force. For some people, the obvious solution to this concern is to redefine the wage structure politically to achieve a socially preferable distribution of income. Thus, minimum wage laws have usually been judged against the criterion of reducing poverty. Statutory minimum wages were also proposed as a way to control the proliferation of manufacturing industries.…show more content…
Governments institute monetary policies and other laws to ensure a favorable environment for economic growth. Minimum wage is a common economic practice in many nations and is a price control that sets a floor on employee wages. Companies must abide by minimum wage laws when compensating employees for their services. As with many government policies, minimum wage has several negative economic effects. Minimum wage represents a government involvement in a nation economy, although businesses are often wary about the prospect of the government making major economic decisions. In the U.S., Congress sets a federal minimum wage that businesses must follow. Individual states can also create separate minimum wage laws above the federal law. Intervention from the federal and state government can create a difficult business environment. Governments may choose to increase minimum wage on an arbitrary basis, making it difficult for companies to hire individuals at a consistent market rate. Government price controls distort the economic theory of supply and demand. Supply and demand is a significant underlying feature of free-market economies. This theory allows individuals and businesses to make decisions based on self-interest. Businesses often pay individuals a wage based on current market standards. Free-market economies usually dictate specific wages for various jobs. Governments attempting to subvert market prices can reduce the demand for new workers due to a high minimum wage. Individuals can face a few negative effects from minimum wage laws. Minimum wage increases an individual annual salary, bumping the employee into a higher marginal tax bracket. But positive effects from minimum wage increases are usually erased through higher marginal tax rates. Employees may also face a reduction in working hours. Businesses attempting to lower operating costs often reduce employee hours to save on payroll expenses.
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