Friday, July 1, 2011

Minimum Wage Laws Contribute to Record Levels of Teen Unemployment

It certainly is not the only reason, but it piles on. Prevent job creators from creating jobs for people that contribute less value then "X" (that "X" being the minimum wage) does not magically mean those workers will be able to contribute more value, it means they will not be a job for. No job, no gaining of experience which would make them more valuable. It creates a painful cycle to the young an inexperienced cutting off an avenue to make a better life for themselves at worst, and at best driving up inflation as the businesses that do hire them are forced to push those costs on to their customers. That cost not coming from an increased in value but from an arbitrary number set by a politician.

"Perhaps you've already noticed around the neighborhood, but this is a rotten summer for young Americans to find a job. The Department of Labor reported last week that a smaller share of 16-19 year-olds are working than at anytime since records began to be kept in 1948.

Only 24% of teens, one in four, have jobs, compared to 42% as recently as the summer of 2001. The nearby chart chronicles the teen employment percentage over time, including the notable plunge in the last decade. So instead of learning valuable job skills—getting out of bed before noon, showing up on time, being courteous to customers, operating a cash register or fork lift—millions of kids will spend the summer playing computer games or hanging out.

The lousy economic recovery explains much of this decline in teens working, and some is due to increases in teen summer school enrollment. Some is also cultural: Many parents don't put the same demands on teens as they once did to get out and work.

But Congress has also contributed by passing one of the most ill-timed minimum wage increases in history. One of the first acts of the gone-but-not-forgotten Nancy Pelosi ascendancy was to raise the minimum wage in stages to $7.25 an hour in 2009 from $5.15 in 2007. Even liberals ought to understand that raising the cost of hiring the young and unskilled while employers are slashing payrolls is loopy economics.

Head to the source to see the chart/graph.

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