Minimum Wage to Increase; Jobs to Decrease?

Posted: Jul 13, 2009 4:40 PM
Minimum wage is set to increase from $6.55 to $7.25 on July 24, bringing the wage floor up to 41% higher than it was when the three-step jump was enacted by the Democratic-controlled congress in 2007.  An article in today's Wall Street Journal entitled "Mandating Unemployment, Congress Prepares to Kill More Jobs" seeks to shed light on just who this increase will benefit, and who will be hurt: 
Then [In 2007] the economy was humming, with an overall jobless rate of 4.5% and many entry-level jobs paying more than the minimum. That's a hard case to make now, with a 9.5% national jobless rate and thousands of employers facing razor-thin profit margins.
According to the article, economist David Neumark of the University of California, Irvine believes, “the 70-cent per-hour minimum wage hike this month would kill 'about 300,000 jobs for those between the ages of 16-24.’”

FreedomWorks further assesses the impact the higher wage will have on college attendance for these young people:
This is the age where the 64% of Americans that graduate high school and start their college careers are saving money, paying tuition, or paying off loans for college. Over the past year, there have been increases in college tuition across the board. ... The recent rise in college tuition, coupled with the rise in minimum wage, means we could see the percentage of Americans that graduate with a bachelors degree, 29% in 2007, decrease.
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