Tuesday 19 March 2019

Effects of minimum wage help finances of other workers

Increasing the minimum wage in 2016 lifted pay by 2pc - even for workers who didn't qualify for the rate.
Increasing the minimum wage in 2016 lifted pay by 2pc - even for workers who didn't qualify for the rate.

David Chance

Increasing the minimum wage in 2016 lifted pay by 2pc - even for workers who didn't qualify for the rate.

There is no evidence of job losses as a result of the increase, although there may have been reductions in hours, a study by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) said.

Without the change approximately 10pc of workers would have earned €9.15 per hour or less in 2016.

"We estimate that the increase in the minimum wage resulted in a 2pc increase in the average hourly wage of workers earning between €6.50 and €11.50 per hour, ESRI researchers Paul Redmond, Karina Doorley and Seamus McGuinness wrote in a report.

That range covers the bottom 25pc of the earners.

Ireland first introduced a minimum wage in 2000, setting it at IR£4.40 (€5.59) an hour.

Relative to European Union peers, the minimum wage here now stands at the higher end of the spectrum.

Last year the minimum wage was increased further to €9.80, on the back of recommendations from the Low Pay Commission.

This works out at a monthly salary of €1,656.20 for employees on the rate.

Arguments over the impact of minimum wages have been particularly intense in the United States, where a raft of cities and states implemented better pay policies.

Democrats are now pushing for a national €15 minimum wage and look set to encounter stiff resistance from Republicans and business groups.

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