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Minimum Wage Effects and Low-Wage Labor Markets: A Disequilibrium Approach

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  • David Neumark
  • William Wascher

Abstract

We present a new approach to estimating minimum wage effects on employment. In contrast to most previous research, we account for the possibility that the relationship between minimum wages and employment depends on the magnitude of the minimum wage relative to the equilibrium wage in the absence of the legislated minimum. In particular, estimating the employment effects of binding minimum wages requires separation of sample observations into those that are on the labor demand curve but off the labor supply curve, and those that are at labor market equilibria. The paper implements an endogenous switching regression model with unknown sample separation that yields these estimates. The approach also yields estimates of the impact of labor market characteristics on the probability that minimum wages are binding. We also extend the disequilibrium approach to monopsony, which introduces a third regime, between the equilibrium monopsony wage and the equilibrium competitive wage, in which observations are on the labor supply curve but off the labor demand curve and minimum wages are therefore positively related to employment. Minimum wage effects under monopsony are estimated in a three-regime endogenous switching regression model with unknown regimes, and the monopsony characterization of low-wage labor markets is tested against the competitive characterization.

Suggested Citation

  • David Neumark & William Wascher, 1994. "Minimum Wage Effects and Low-Wage Labor Markets: A Disequilibrium Approach," NBER Working Papers 4617, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4617
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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. repec:fth:prinin:315 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. 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.
    6. Vuong, Quang H, 1989. "Likelihood Ratio Tests for Model Selection and Non-nested Hypotheses," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 307-333, March.
    7. William J. Carrington & Bruce Fallick, 1999. "Minimum wage careers?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-46, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    8. David Neumark & William L. Wascher, 1993. "Employment effects of minimum and subminimum wages: reply to Card, Katz, and Krueger," Working Paper Series / Economic Activity Section 144, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    9. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1993. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," Working Papers 694, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    10. Richard B. Freeman, 1982. "Economic Determinants of Geographic and Individual Variation in the Labor Market Position of Young Persons," NBER Chapters, in: The Youth Labor Market Problem: Its Nature, Causes, and Consequences, pages 115-154, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. David Card & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1993. "An Evaluation of Recent Evidence on the Employment Effects of Minimum and Subminimum Wages," NBER Working Papers 4528, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. repec:fth:prinin:298 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Cited by:

    1. Tomer Blumkin & Efraim Sadka, 2005. "Income Taxation and Wage Policy: An Application to Minimum Wage," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 12(6), pages 713-722, November.
    2. Munguia Corella, Luis Felipe, 2020. "Minimum Wages in Monopsonistic Labor Markets," SocArXiv abpj9, Center for Open Science.
    3. 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.
    4. Neumark, David & Wascher, William, 1995. "Minimum Wage Effects on Employment and School Enrollment," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(2), pages 199-206, April.
    5. H. J. Holzer & S. Danziger, "undated". "Are Jobs Available for Disadvantaged Workers in Urban Areas?," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1157-98, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
    6. David Neumark, 1999. "The Employment Effects of Recent Minimum Wage Increases: Evidence from a Pre-specified Research Design," NBER Working Papers 7171, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Neumark, David & Wascher, William, 1998. "Is the Time-Series Evidence on Minimum Wage Effects Contaminated by Publication Bias?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 36(3), pages 458-470, July.
    8. Felgueroso, Florentino & Dolado, Juan José, 1997. "Los efectos del salario mínimo : Evidencia empírica el caso español," DE - Documentos de Trabajo. Economía. DE 3880, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.

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