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Legal Minimum Wage

Volume 81: debated on Tuesday 18 June 1985

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asked the Prime Minister if, following her answer, Official Report, 4 June, column 149, she will list the sources of the evidence showing the setting of a legal minimum wage leading to increased unemployment.

Evidence can be found in the following:

  • 1. OECD Occasional Study 1983 "Effects of the Minumum Wage on the Youth Labour Market in North America and France" by J. Martin.
  • 2. Low Pay Unit Pamphlet No. 50 "From the Dole Queue to the Sweatshop" by H. Neuberger.
  • 3. Institute of Economic Affairs, Hobart Paper No. 101, "Low Pay or No Pay".
  • 4. Department of Employment Research Paper No. 51 "Pay and Employment in four Retail Trades" by C. Craig and F. Wilkinson.
  • 5. Department of Employment Research Paper No. 52 "Wage Floors in the Clothing Industry 1950–1981" by P. Morgan, D. Paterson and R. Barrie.
  • 6. Journal of Economic Literature 1982, "Effect of the Minimum Wage on Employment and Unemployment" by Brown et al.
  • 7. Government Economic Service, Working Paper No. 52, March 1982, "Wages and Employment in Agriculture, England and Wales, 1960–80" by P. J. Lund et al.
  • 8. In its Economic Outlook, published at the beginning of this month, the OECD argues that:
  • "The need to reduce barriers to adjustment in labour markets is well recognised. Regulations intended to protect workers from possible job loss inhibit the creation of new jobs in high risk activities; and high minimum wages rstrict employment openings and opportunities to upgrade skills especially among the young. Despite this recognition there has been insufficient progress in these areas in the last year".