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Obama’s Pick to Head Council of Economic Advisers Billed as “Jobs Expert”

Interesting fact about Alan Krueger, Obama’s pick to head the Council of Economic Advisers, Alan B. Krueger. His research showed that raising the minimum wage doesn’t destroy minimum wage jobs, it helps fill job vacancies:

Mr. Krueger is best known for his studies testing widely held economic assumptions about the labor market, like a study with the economist David Card about the impact on jobs of a higher minimum wage.

Economists widely assumed that raising the minimum wage meant more money for some workers but fewer jobs for others as employers cut payrolls to cut costs. Mr. Krueger and Mr. Card studied 400 fast-food restaurants in two states after New Jersey raised its minimum wage during a recession to a level significantly higher than neighboring Pennsylvania.

New Jersey restaurants added workers, while those in Pennsylvania cut jobs. The economists concluded that such businesses routinely operate with vacancies for lack of workers willing to work at the low wages; if the minimum wage goes up, more people apply for jobs. [NYT]

The New York Times bills Krueger is a “jobs expert.” The country could certainly use one of those.

[Photo credit: ratterrell, Creative Commons.]


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