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The effects of living wage laws: Evidence from failed and derailed living wage campaigns

  • Adams, Scott
  • Neumark, David

Living wage campaigns have succeeded in about 100 jurisdictions in the United States but have also been unsuccessful in numerous cities. These unsuccessful campaigns provide a better control group or counterfactual for estimating the effects of living wage laws than the broader set of all cities without a law, and also permit the separate estimation of the effects of living wage laws and living wage campaigns. We find that living wage laws raise wages of low-wage workers but reduce employment among the least-skilled, especially when the laws cover business assistance recipients or are accompanied by similar laws in nearby cities.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6WMG-4GD4S8W-1/2/de3fd6c914e80c6d4b613a79c0b2329c
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 58 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 (September)
Pages: 177-202

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Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:58:y:2005:i:2:p:177-202
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622905

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  1. David Neumark & Scott Adams, 2003. "Do Living Wage Ordinances Reduce Urban Poverty?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(3).
  2. Scott Adams & David Neumark, 2004. "When Do Living Wages Bite?," PPIC Working Papers 2004.09, Public Policy Institute of California.
  3. Scott Adams & David Neumark, 2003. "Living Wage Effects: New and Improved Evidence," NBER Working Papers 9702, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Gruber, Jonathan, 1994. "The Incidence of Mandated Maternity Benefits," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 622-41, June.
  5. Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2002. "How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?," NBER Working Papers 8841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Marianne P. Bitler & Jonah B. Gelbach & Hilary W. Hoynes, 2003. "Some Evidence on Race, Welfare Reform, and Household Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 293-298, May.
  7. Burkhauser, Richard V & Couch, Kenneth A & Wittenburg, David C, 2000. "A Reassessment of the New Economics of the Minimum Wage Literature with Monthly Data from the Current Population Survey," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(4), pages 653-80, October.
  8. John DiNardo & David S. Lee, 2002. "The Impact of Unionization on Establishment Closure: A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Representation Elections," NBER Working Papers 8993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Smith, James P & Welch, Finis, 1984. "Affirmative Action and Labor Markets," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(2), pages 269-301, April.
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