Minimum Wage Hike a Bad Idea

Regarding “GOP nickel-and-diming in minimum-wage clash” (Page B10, Sunday), columnist Bill King says he believes a higher minimum wage is a good thing. Unfortunately for him, the vast majority of economists believe otherwise. And in the latter case, that belief is based on hard empirical fact.

Peer-reviewed research from the past decade shows that minimum wage hikes disproportionately hurt teenagers (with even worse effects for minority teenagers), fail to have a measurable impact on economic output, and actually increase the number of people living at or near the poverty line.

Moreover, fully 85 percent of the most credible economic research on this issue points to a loss of job opportunities following a wage hike. And this isn’t a matter of belief – it’s a proven fact.

Michael Saltsman, Employment Policies Institute, Washington, D.C.