Minimum wages: some analytical considerations
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Minimum wages: some analytical considerations book
Over the past decade, and with growing momentum, the minimum wage has become an increasingly prominent topic in labour market economics. In part, this is a response to its rise in political importance. This is itself a consequence of the association of higher levels of unemployment with a widening dispersion of wages, especially in the United States and the United Kingdom. Those at the bottom end of the labour market seem to have been hit hard both by lower wages and lower levels of employment. Not surprisingly, there has been concern with whether a minimum wage would improve the well-being of those in or potentially in low-paid employment. Not surprisingly, the very same laissez-faire ideology and politics that have contributed, through a range of policies, to the marginalisation of those already badly off in the labour market, have also been associated with strenuous support for the abolition let alone the extension of minimum wages. In short, deteriorating labour market conditions for the low paid, and higher unemployment, jointly have the effect of intensifying debate over the minimum wage - some determined to support those apparently suffering from the consequences of market forces, others determined to alleviate that suffering through the supposed fuller reliance upon the market.