Building an Economy that Works for Everyone

Highest minimum wage in the nation still buys less than in 1968

MajorityRules recently built on some of EOI’s earlier research to illustrate that, as high as Washington’s minimum wage is today, in real dollar terms it is still lower than it would have been in 1968:

A 2004 study by Marilyn Watkins of the Economic Opportunity Institute noted that even with the passage of I-688 Washington new minimum wage had not kept pace with inflation when one considered that in 1968 Washington’s minimum wage was $1.80/hour. In 2004 when Washington State’s minimum wage was $7.16 she calculated that if it had kept pace with inflation since 1968 it should have been $8.40.

Based on the inflation increase between 2004 and 2008 I calculated that Washington State’s 2008 minimum wage would have to be $9.47 instead of $8.07 if we had kept pace with the minimum wage in 1968.

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