Saturday, February 17, 2007

Teens lose jobs due to minimum wage in Arizona

Do you want to remove teenagers from productive jobs to be idle at home or whereever? If you want idle teens there is a way to increase them. The minimum wage hurts many of the people intended to be helped by it. When employers are forced to increase pay they cut jobs, so the "help" some get is losing their job. AZCentral found it happening in Arizona in 2007:
Some Valley employers, especially those in the food industry, say payroll budgets have risen so much that they're cutting hours, instituting hiring freezes and laying off employees. And teens are among the first workers to go. Companies maintain the new wage was raised to $6.75 per hour from $5.15 per hour to help the breadwinners in working-poor families. Teens typically have other means of support. Mark Messner, owner of Pepi's Pizza in south Phoenix, estimates he has employed more than 2,000 high school students since 1990. But he plans to lay off three teenage workers and decrease hours worked by others. Of his 25-person workforce, roughly 75 percent are in high school. "I've had to go to some of my kids and say, 'Look, my payroll just increased 13 percent,' " he said. " 'Sorry, I don't have any hours for you.' "
Cause: Forced pay increase. Effect: Employers have increased expenses they cannot pass on, so they must cut expenses. They usually, not always cut some jobs. Some call this the law of unintended consequences. I have adopted the term "perfectly predictable surprise," * because the economists will tell anyone who listens that this is what happens when you impose higher pay. Every time. It may not be what you intended, but it's how the job market works. You can violate this result as easily as you can violate the Law of Gravity. * I wish I could remember the name of the woman who first used this term to give her credit.

No comments: