How Many Layoffs Would a Higher Minimum Wage Lead To?

March 20, 2014 at 11:41 am

Photo credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Photo credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Bad news for minimum-wage workers: If President Obama succeeds in getting the federal minimum wage hiked to $10.10 an hour, some workers could lose their current jobs.

According to an Express Employments Professionals survey released Wednesday, a whopping 38 percent of employers said that they would lay off employees if the proposed hike went into effect.

Fifty-four percent of employers also said they’d hire fewer people if the minimum wage rose to $10.10 an hour. “This is in line with other research that shows businesses respond more by not hiring future workers than laying off existing employees—many of whom would get promoted or move to another company soon anyway,” explains James Sherk, labor policy analyst at The Heritage Foundation.

So, for some workers, sure, the higher minimum wage will be nice. But for plenty of other workers—for example, those who would prefer to make the current minimum wage of $7.25 an hour rather than nothing at all—Obama’s minimum wage hike is a lousy deal.