Does the Minimum Wage Hurt Workers?

Some politicians argue that raising the minimum wage helps the poor and disadvantaged. While this may appear to be the case on the surface, economics professor Antony Davies explains that the common view of the minimum wage overlooks one important detail: The minimum wage does not force employers to pay a particular wage to every worker; it forces employers to pay a particular wage to every worker they choose to keep.

Using an example, Professor Davies shows that minimum wage increases may make the least productive workers too expensive for employers. Minimum wage increases do not help the worker at the expense of the employer; instead they help the most productive workers at the cost of the least productive workers. What’s worse is that over time the more productive worker likely would have been rewarded for productivity anyway.

The evidence is not just anecdotal. The data show that minimum wage increases have little effect on unemployment among college graduates. Minimum wage increases lead to higher unemployment among high school graduates, though, and significantly increase unemployment for the least skilled, least educated workers. The minimum wage may be a well-intentioned public policy, but it often hurts the workers most in need of help.

bosthegreat More than 1 year ago
This is a great video. But it also lacks to mention OJT. There are many jobs that don't require a college education. Employers could train employees to do specific tasks. Without minimum wage employers could pay a low wage while they train employees and then when they are proficient can pay them more money and then the employee doesn't need to go into debt for a college education that has all sorts of classes that have nothing to do with the real world. If the employer doesn't increase wages after the employee is trained then the employee can quit and work for a competitor.
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