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Minimum Wages and Poverty

Author

Listed:
  • John T. Addison
  • McKinleyl Blackburn

Abstract

The principal justification for minimum wage legislation has been the claim that it would improve the economic condition of low-wage workers. Most previous analyses of the distributional effects of minimum wages have been based on simulation exercises employing restrictive assumptions that guarantee the conclusion that an increase in the minimum wage reduces poverty. In contrast, the authors of this paper adopt a more flexible “reduced-form†approach that links increases in both federal and state minima to contemporaneous changes in poverty rates. For the period 1983–96, they find indications of a poverty-reducing effect of minimum wages among teenagers and older junior high school dropouts.

Suggested Citation

  • John T. Addison & McKinleyl Blackburn, 1999. "Minimum Wages and Poverty," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(3), pages 393-409, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:ilrrev:v:52:y:1999:i:3:p:393-409
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lawrence Katz & Alan Krueger, 1992. "The Effect of the Minimum Wage on the Fast Food Industry," Working Papers 678, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    2. Alison J. Wellington, 1991. "Effects of the Minimum Wage on the Employment Status of Youths: An Update," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(1), pages 27-46.
    3. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1994. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 772-793, September.
    4. Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1992. "The Effect of the Minimum Wage on the Fast-Food Industry," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 46(1), pages 6-21, October.
    5. David Card, 1992. "Using Regional Variation in Wages to Measure the Effects of the Federal Minimum Wage," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 46(1), pages 22-37, October.
    6. Brown, Charles & Gilroy, Curtis & Kohen, Andrew, 1982. "The Effect of the Minimum Wage on Employment and Unemployment," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 20(2), pages 487-528, June.
    7. John T. Addison & McKinley L. Blackburn & Chad D. Cotti, 2012. "The Effect of Recent Increases in the U.S. Minimum Wage: Results from Three Data Sources," Working Paper series 58_12, Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
    8. Johnson, William R & Browning, Edgar K, 1983. "The Distributional and Efficiency Effects of Increasing the Minimum Wage: A Simulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 204-211, March.
    9. David Card, 1992. "Using Regional Variation in Wages to Measure the Effects of the Federal Minimum Wage," Working Papers 680, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    10. Blackburn, McKinley L., 1997. "Misspecified skedastic functions in grouped-data models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 1-8, August.
    11. repec:fth:prinin:300 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Richard V. Burkhauser & T. Aldrich Finegan, 1989. "The minimum wage and the poor: The end of a relationship," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(1), pages 53-71.
    13. repec:fth:prinin:298 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Miguel Székely, 1997. "Policy Options for Poverty Alleviation," Research Department Publications 4062, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    2. Leif Danziger, 2009. "The elasticity of labor demand and the minimum wage," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 22(3), pages 757-772, July.
    3. David Neumark & William Wascher, 2000. "Using the EITC to Increase Family Earnings: New Evidence and a Comparison with the Minimum Wage," JCPR Working Papers 134, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
    4. Marianne E. Page & Joanne Spetz & Jane Millar, 2005. "Does the minimum wage affect welfare caseloads?," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(2), pages 273-295.
    5. Alaniz, Enrique & Gindling, T.H. & Terrell, Katherine, 2011. "The impact of minimum wages on wages, work and poverty in Nicaragua," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(S1), pages 45-59.
    6. Danziger, Leif, 2006. "The Elasticity of Labor Demand and the Optimal Minimum Wage," IZA Discussion Papers 2360, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Madeline Zavodny, 1998. "Why minimum wage hikes may not reduce employment," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, vol. 83(Q 2), pages 18-28.
    8. David Neumark & Mark Schweitzer & William Wascher, 2005. "The Effects of Minimum Wages on the Distribution of Family Incomes: A Nonparametric Analysis," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 40(4), pages 867-894.
    9. Lonnie Stevans & David Sessions, 2001. "Minimum Wage Policy and Poverty in the United States," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(1), pages 65-75.
    10. Diego Angel-Urdinola, 2008. "Can a minimum wage increase have an adverse impact on inequality? Evidence from two Latin American economies," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 6(1), pages 57-71, March.
    11. David Neumark & William Wascher, 2002. "Do Minimum Wages Fight Poverty?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 40(3), pages 315-333, July.
    12. Miguel Székely, 1997. "Opciones de políticas para la paliación de la pobreza," Research Department Publications 4063, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy

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