Raising Minimum Wage Would Ease Poverty But Cost Some Jobs

By CNN News Wire

Published 02/18 2014 03:39PM

Updated 02/18 2014 03:41PM

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) --  Raising the federal minimum wage would boost the incomes of most low-wage workers but result in job loss for some, according to an analysis released Tuesday.

The Congressional Budget Office estimates that gradually raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would reduce total employment by about 500,000 workers, or 0.3% of the workforce.

The CBO also said there is a good chance the job loss could be much less -- or could reach as high as 1 million jobs.

The net effect, however, would be a boost for most low-wage workers. The CBO estimates about 16.5 million workers would see higher earnings once the full $10.10 wage was implemented in 2016, which Democrats have been calling for.

What's more, the increase would lift an estimated 900,000 workers out of poverty.

Related: Minimum wage since 1938

In addition, the CBO said, some workers who are already earning a little more than $10.10 would also see a raise.

So, too, would some higher-wage workers, who "would owe their jobs and increased earnings to the heightened demand for goods and services that would result from the minimum wage increase," the report said.

The negative effects of a higher minimum could also mean reduced real income for not only those who lose their jobs, but also for business owners and for consumers, who in some cases may be hit with higher prices.

Related: Check minimum wage in your state To top of page

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