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Deserving Poor and the Desirability of Minimum Wage Rules

Author

Listed:
  • Tomer Blumkin
  • Leif Danziger

Abstract

In this paper we provide a novel justification for the use of minimum wage rules to supplement the optimal tax-and-transfer system. We demonstrate that if labor supply decisions are concentrated along the intensive margin and employment is efficiently rationed, a minimum wage rule can be socially beneficial by serving as a tagging device that targets benefits to the deserving poor, defined as low-skilled workers exhibiting a weak taste for leisure.

Suggested Citation

  • Tomer Blumkin & Leif Danziger, 2014. "Deserving Poor and the Desirability of Minimum Wage Rules," CESifo Working Paper Series 4721, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4721
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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp4721.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hungerbühler, Mathias & Lehmann, Etienne, 2009. "On the optimality of a minimum wage: New insights from optimal tax theory," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(3-4), pages 464-481, April.
    2. Guesnerie, Roger & Roberts, Kevin, 1987. "Minimum wage legislation as a second best policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(1-2), pages 490-498.
    3. Rebitzer, James B. & Taylor, Lowell J., 1995. "The consequences of minimum wage laws Some new theoretical ideas," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 245-255, February.
    4. J. A. Mirrlees, 1971. "An Exploration in the Theory of Optimum Income Taxation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(2), pages 175-208.
    5. Lee, David & Saez, Emmanuel, 2012. "Optimal minimum wage policy in competitive labor markets," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(9-10), pages 739-749.
    6. Stephen P. Allen, 1987. "Taxes, Redistribution, and the Minimum Wage: A Theoretical Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(3), pages 477-489.
    7. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1992. "Understanding welfare stigma: Taxpayer resentment and statistical discrimination," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 165-183, July.
    8. Katherine Cuff, 2000. "Optimality of workfare with heterogeneous preferences," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(1), pages 149-174, February.
    9. Emmanuel Saez, 2002. "Optimal Income Transfer Programs: Intensive versus Extensive Labor Supply Responses," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(3), pages 1039-1073.
    10. Fong, Christina, 2001. "Social preferences, self-interest, and the demand for redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 225-246, November.
    11. Cahuc, P. & Saint-Martin, A. & Zylberberg, A., 2001. "The consequences of the minimum wage when other wages are bargained over," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 337-352, February.
    12. Lang, Kevin, 1987. "Pareto Improving Minimum Wage Laws," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 25(1), pages 145-158, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Clémence Berson, 2016. "Local labor markets and taste-based discrimination," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-21, December.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    redistribution; minimum wage; efficient rationing;

    JEL classification:

    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General

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