BFMW In the News

Free Lance Star (VA) State economist doubts impact will be large

By Chelyen Davis
Free Lance Star (VA), July 23, 2009

Tomorrow, several million American workers will get a pay raise.

That's the day the federal minimum wage goes up to $7.25 an hour, from $6.55 per hour.

It's the final bump in a three-year phased-in increase for some of the nation's lowest-paid workers.

But this one comes during the worst economic recession in years. Unemployment nationally was at 9.5 percent for June, and the country has lost more than 3 million jobs in 2009 alone.

McClatchy Newspapers: Minimum wage increase is a double-edged sword

By Diane Stafford
Kansas City Star, July 23, 2009. Also Sacramento Bee, New Jersey Record, Sun Journal (ME), more.

The federal minimum wage rises today from $6.55 to $7.25 an hour, bringing with it controversy about whether the increase is good or bad for the economy.

The raise, which will affect about 4 million workers nationally, is the third and final increase mandated by Congress in 2007.

For a full-time minimum wage earner, the bump means $28 a week more.

Journal Record (OK): Minimum wage takes a jump; business owners consider effect on bottom line

By Brian Brus
The Journal Record, July 23, 2009

OKLAHOMA CITY – Jamie Brown doesn’t like having to balance her employees’ salary increases against the company’s success in the current recession.

“If you are worrying about your bottom-line profit and you have a forced minimum wage raise, then you wonder, well, do I go ahead and give myself a raise, too? Or my salaried employees? Or do I wait until I see how this is going to affect my labor costs?” said Brown, the general manager of Earl’s Rib Palace in the Bricktown district near downtown Oklahoma City.

Dow Jones Newswire: Minimum wage? Get a real job

By Al Lewis
A DOW JONES NEWSWIRES COLUMN, July 23, 2009

Business owners nationwide can’t wait until Friday when the federal minimum wage goes from $6.55 to $7.25 an hour.

That’s according to a group called “Business for a Shared Prosperity.”

This share-the-wealth agitator has assembled a colorful array of endorsements on its Web site, businessforafairminimumwage.org. It quotes Costco Wholesale Corp. (COST) Chief Executive Jim Sinegal and even Adam Smith, the philosophical founder of capitalism.

Leader Telegram: Businesses react to this week's rise in minimum wage

By Eric Lindquist
Leader-Telegram (WI), July 23, 2009

The nation's lowest-paid workers will get a raise Friday when the federal minimum wage climbs 10.7 percent to $7.25 an hour.

With the economy mired in recession, the boost couldn't come at a better time for the workers who will benefit, but business owners are worried the change will hurt their already-strained bottom lines.

North High School junior Jake Jenneman, who earns minimum wage working for a local fast-food restaurant, said the increase will be much appreciated.

Kansas City Star: Minimum wage increase is a double-edged sword

By Diane Stafford
The Kansas City Star, Jul. 23, 2009

The federal minimum wage rises today from $6.55 to $7.25 an hour, bringing with it controversy about whether the increase is good or bad for the economy.

The raise, which will affect about 4 million workers nationally, is the third and final increase mandated by Congress in 2007.

For a full-time minimum wage earner, the bump means $28 a week more.

“When you have low income, any kind of increase in your paycheck is a big help,” said Sharon Davis, a minimum wage earner who has a part-time clerical job.

St. Louis Post Dispatch: Federal minimum wage goes up Friday

By Steve Giegerich
St. Louis Post-Dispatch, July 22, 2009

The federal minimum wage is scheduled to go from $6.55 to $7.25 on Friday, a pay bump for 4.5 million Americans and cause for conflicting opinions among various special interest groups.

In one corner, the Employment Policies Institute — fearful that the rising minimum wage salaries will compel small business owners to reduce payrolls — is asking lawmakers to put the increase on hold.

Sioux Falls Business News: Business Owners Welcome Minimum Wage Increase

Sioux Falls Business News, July 21, 2009

Raising minimum wage will help economy, say national business leaders and small business owners from states affected by July 24 increase

July 21, 2009, Boston, MA -Business owners across the nation are welcoming the July 24 increase in the federal minimum wage from $6.55 to $7.25. National business leaders and small business owners in states where workers are getting a raise say the increase will boost consumer buying power and promote economic recovery.

McClatchy Newspapers: On Friday, lowest-wage workers get a pay hike

By Tony Pugh
McClatchy Newspapers, July 19, 2009

WASHINGTON — The final installment of a three-part increase in the federal minimum wage is proving to be the most controversial.

Two previous wage hikes, one in 2007, the other in 2008, pushed the federal wage to $5.85 and then to the current $6.55 an hour. The third, which goes into effect Friday, will push it to $7.25 an hour.

That's not a life-changing raise — an extra $28 a week for a fulltime worker earning the federal minimum — though low-wage earners like Kendell Patterson in Oklahoma City, Okla., say it'll help.

On Common Ground News (GA): Minimum wage going up July 24

By Valerie J. Morgan
On Common Ground News (GA), July 15, 2009

The federal minimum wage for workers in Georgia and 28 other states will increase from $6.55 to $7.25 an hour starting July 24. This will mark the third increase in three years.

For a full-time worker, the 70-cent hike will mean a weekly pay increase to $290 and annual earnings of $15,080. Even with the increase, however, a family of three still will fall below the federal poverty line of $17, 600. About a third of Georgians impacted by the change are parents, according to state labor officials.

Reuters: In American crisis, anger and guns

By Bernd Debusmann
Reuters Columnist, 3/19/09

Washington -- In the first two months of this year, around 2.5 million Americans bought guns, a 26% percent increase over the same period in 2008. It was great news for gun makers and a sign of a dark mood in the country.

Gun sales shot up almost immediately after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidential elections on November 4 and firearm enthusiasts rushed to stores, fearing he would tighten gun controls despite campaign pledges to the contrary.