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Minimum Wages and Schooling: Evidence from the UK's Introduction of a National Minimum Wage

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  • Patricia Rice

Abstract

This paper uses the introduction of the national minimum wage in the UK in April 1999 as a 'natural experiment' to analyse the impact of minimum wages on enrolment in schooling.� At the time of its introduction, only workers aged 18 years or more were covered by the legislation.� The paper uses panel data for a sample of young people in a given school-year cohort, some of whom were aged 18 years in spring 1999 and therefore eligible to receive the national minimum wage, and others who were aged only 17 years.� We compare participation in post-compulsory schooling for the two groups, both before and after the enactment of the legislation and find robust evidence that eligibility for the national minimum wage significantly reduces the probability of participation in post-compulsory schooling for young people living in areas where the national minimum is high relative to local earnings.

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Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number 482.

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Date of creation: 01 Apr 2010
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:482

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Keywords: Minimum wages; Enrolment in schooling; Natural experiment approach;

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  1. David Neumark & William Wascher, 1995. "The Effects of Minimum Wages on Teenage Employment and Enrollment: Evidence from Matched CPS Surveys," NBER Working Papers 5092, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Cunha, Flavio & Heckman, James J. & Lochner, Lance, 2006. "Interpreting the Evidence on Life Cycle Skill Formation," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
  3. Hyslop, Dean & Stillman, Steven, 2007. "Youth minimum wage reform and the labour market in New Zealand," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 201-230, April.
  4. Cahuc, Pierre & Michel, Philippe, 1996. "Minimum wage unemployment and growth," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(7), pages 1463-1482, August.
  5. Neumark, David & Wascher, William, 1995. "Minimum-Wage Effects on School and Work Transitions of Teenagers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(2), pages 244-49, May.
  6. Kelly Bedard & Elizabeth Dhuey, 2006. "The Persistence of Early Childhood Maturity: International Evidence of Long-Run Age Effects," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(4), pages 1437-1472, November.
  7. Stewart, Mark B., 2002. "The Impact of the Introduction of the UK Minimum Wage on the Employment Probabilities of Low Wage Workers," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2002 169, Royal Economic Society.
  8. Michele Campolieti & Tony Fang & Morley Gunderson, 2003. "How Minimum Wages Affect Schooling-Employment Outcomes in Canada, 1993-1999," Journal of Labor Research, Transaction Publishers, vol. 26(3), pages 533-545, August.
  9. Dean Hyslop & Steven Stillman, 2004. "Youth Minimum Wage Reform and the Labour Market," Treasury Working Paper Series 04/03, New Zealand Treasury.
  10. Mark Turner & Berna Demiralp, 2001. "Do higher minimum wages harm minority and inner-city teens?," The Review of Black Political Economy, Springer, vol. 28(4), pages 95-116, June.
  11. Neumark, David & Wascher, William, 2003. "Minimum wages and skill acquisition: another look at schooling effects," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 1-10, February.
  12. Mark B. Stewart & Joanna K. Swaffield, 2008. "The Other Margin: Do Minimum Wages Cause Working Hours Adjustments for Low-Wage Workers?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 75(297), pages 148-167, 02.
  13. Mark B. Stewart, 2002. "Estimating the Impact of the Minimum Wage Using Geographical Wage Variation," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 64(s1), pages 583-605, 08.
  14. David Neumark & William Wascher, 1994. "Minimum Wage Effects on Employment and School Enrollment," NBER Working Papers 4679, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Agell, Jonas & Lommerud, Kjell Erik, 1997. "Minimum wages and the incentives for skill formation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 25-40, April.
  16. Chaplin, Duncan D. & Turner, Mark D. & Pape, Andreas D., 2003. "Minimum wages and school enrollment of teenagers: a look at the 1990's," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 11-21, February.
  17. David Card, 1992. "Do minimum wages reduce employment? A case study of California, 1987û1989," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 46(1), pages 38-54, October.
  18. Stuart Landon, 1997. "High School Enrollment, Minimum Wages and Education Spending," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 23(2), pages 141-163, June.
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