Your current web browser is outdated. For best viewing experience, please consider upgrading to the latest version.

Contact

Send a question or comment using the form below. This message may be routed through support staff.

Email Article

ERROR
Main Error Mesage Here
More detailed message would go here to provide context for the user and how to proceed
ERROR
Main Error Mesage Here
More detailed message would go here to provide context for the user and how to proceed

Manhattan Institute

search
Close Nav
Share this issue_brief on Close

Issues 2016: Is a $15 Federal Minimum Wage Appropriate?

issue brief

Issues 2016: Is a $15 Federal Minimum Wage Appropriate?

July 28, 2016
EconomicsEmploymentIncome Inequality

Executive Summary

The size and diversity of the U.S. labor market make a national lens inappropriate for evaluating minimum-wage policy. A dramatic increase in the federal minimum wage—to $15 or even $12 per hour—would replace a system that tailors policy to local conditions with a system that imposes a single standard from America’s most prosperous cities on less affluent areas that can ill afford it.

Key Findings

  • The ratio of the minimum wage to the median wage in the U.S.—based on the controlling federal, state, and local minimums—is 0.47: this ratio aligns closely with the standard 0.5 benchmark and places the U.S. above the 0.46 average for comparable advanced, market-based economies.
  • The 13 states with the highest median wage all have a minimum wage at least one dollar above the federal minimum.
  • Relative to their median wages, imposing a minimum wage of $15 per hour in places like El Paso and Myrtle Beach—where the median wage level is less than $13 per hour—would be the equivalent of imposing a minimum wage of $30 per hour in Washington, D.C., or Silicon Valley.

READ FULL REPORT

Return to the Manhattan Institute's Issues 2016 series

______________________

Oren Cass is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Follow him on Twitter here.

Photo by Otto Yamamoto / Flickr

Saved!
Close