Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Was Seattle's $15 minimum wage really good for "workers"?

There are different spins on the effects of Seattle’s recent minimum wage laws setting the bar high at $15 an hour.

In general, the number of minimum wage jobs did go down slightly.  But there were more jobs in the slightly higher area (about $20 an hour).  Companies were willing to hire more skilled people who could bring in the given amount of revenue in less time.

It is a little hard to see how this would work in the fast food business, unless companies automated more of the food delivery.  I can remember that in NYC in the 60s there were restaurants called “Automats” that have been forgotten.

Ben Spielberg has a story in the Washington Post here.

Forbes, however, compares the opposing viewpoints on this quite thoroughly, here.

After my career ending retirement at the end of 2001, I went back to the beginning and worked for $6 an hour calling for contributions for the Minnesota orchestra in 2002.  That became a new normal, a free market cultural revolution. As a debt collector in 2003, I made $10 an hour (plus commissions).  We weren’t paid when the system went down and we got sent home.  I didn’t care that much because I had decent severance and retirement.

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