Full-Page Ad in St. Louis Post-Dispatch Highlights Consequences of $12 Minimum Wage for Missouri

Points to research concluding proposal would cost state over 20,000 jobs
  • Publication Date: September 2016

Washington D.C. – Today, the Employment Policies Institute (EPI) placed a full-page ad in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch highlighting how a $12 minimum wage would cost the state over 20,000 jobs and put starter jobs out of reach by cutting off the bottom rungs of the career ladder.

View the ad here.

The ad features a young employee looking worryingly at a career ladder with the bottom rungs of entry-level jobs cut out and is headlined: “$12 Minimum Wage: Putting Starter Jobs out of Reach.”

The text at the bottom reads: “A $12 starting wage in Missouri will eliminate jobs for over 20,000 young people and other less-skilled job seekers. If young people can’t find their first job, how will they find their next one?”

In 2014, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office determined that 500,000 jobs would be lost nationwide from a $10.10 federal minimum wage. Drs. William Even from Miami University and David Macpherson from Trinity University replicated CBO methodology and concluded that 770,000 jobs would be lost from a $12 minimum wage, around 20,000 of them in Missouri.

View the analysis here.

Cities and states that have already experimented with such dramatic starter wage increases are feeling the consequences first-hand. In Oakland, CA which raised its minimum wage to $12.25 last year, at least 10 grocery stores and restaurants closed in its Chinatown neighborhood partially because of the wage hike.

In nearby Berkeley, whose minimum wage is currently $12.53, the coffee shop Mokka decided it will close this summer primarily because of the minimum wage increase. Black Oak Books, a large independent bookstore in the city, closed its doors after 33 years partially because of the wage hike.

Further north in Sacramento, the higher state minimum wage recently forced the closure of another bookstore. And in San Francisco, whose minimum wage is currently $13, numerous restaurants, including Abbot’s CellarSourceLuna Park, and Roosevelt Tamale Parlor, have closed citing the minimum wage increase as a determining factor. More stories can be found at Facesof15.com.

A recent paper from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco summarized the research on minimum wages increases, and confirmed that past hikes have measurably reduced job opportunities.

“Politicians  who think they can score points by supporting dramatic minimum wage increases should think again,” said Michael Saltsman, research director at the Employment Policies Institute. “Killing 20,000 jobs and putting starter jobs out of reach is not a winning strategy.”

For more information, visit EPIOnline.org. To schedule an interview, contact Jordan Bruneau at (202) 463-7650 or bruneau@epionline.org.

The Employment Policies Institute is a nonprofit research organization dedicated to studying public policy issues surrounding employment growth. In particular, EPI focuses on issues that affect entry-level employment. EPI receives support from restaurants, foundations, and individuals.