UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

July 28, 2009

MINIMUM WAGE STUCK IN THE 1950S

Holly Sklar ZNet - Are you better off than you were 40 years ago? Not if you're a minimum wage worker. It would take $9.92 today to match the buying power of the minimum wage at its peak in 1968, the year Martin Luther King died fighting for living wages for sanitation workers. In today's dollars, the 1968 hourly minimum wage adds up to $20,634 a year working full time. The new federal minimum wage of $7.25 comes to just $15,080. That's $5,554 in lost wages. . . The minimum wage is stuck in the 1950s. With the raise, the minimum wage is higher than 1950's inflation- adjusted $6.71, but lower than the 1956 minimum wage of $7.93 in today's dollars.

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