NY Times — Did the Minimum Wage Increase Destroy Jobs

Casey B. Mulligan is an economics professor at the University of Chicago.

As I’ve discussed before, national trends suggest that the sharp fall in part-time work during the last five months of 2009 can be largely attributed to last summer’s federal minimum-wage increase. A look at job changes in individual states seems to confirm this conclusion.

Two months ago, I noted how national, seasonally adjusted part-time employment increased almost 2.5 million during this recession, but then it peaked in July 2009 and headed sharply downward. I thought that it was no coincidence that the federal minimum hourly wage was raised, on July 24, 2009, from $6.55 to $7.25 – especially since the inflation-adjusted federal minimum wage had already gotten pretty high.

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