Weekly Roundup: From Slicing Bread to Saving Honeybees

Our everyday economics includes behavioral economics, commitment devices, environment, supply, regulation, free trade, gender issues and the minimum wage.

The One Big Issue Where Economists Disagree

Economic research on the impact of a higher minimum wage on employment provides no clear answers. Economists on each side say opposing research is flawed.

Our Weekly Roundup: From Bank Regulation to Water Taxation

This week’s everyday economics stories included minimum wage, price floors, cost-benefit analysis, behavioral economics, financial regulation and public goods.

The Policy that 600 Economists Support and 500 Oppose

A controversial policy that dates back to 1938, the nominal federal minimum wage has increased from $.25 to $7.25 and is higher in many states and cities.

A Tale of Two Cities… and One Mall

Half of the Valley Fair Mall is in Santa Clara, CA while the other half is in San Jose. Because San Jose has a minimum wage of $10.15 while Santa Clara’s is $8.00, the stores at the mall have a problem. Minimum…

Hamburger Economics

Our Sunday Charts The 2014 Big Mac Index is out and not much has changed. Norway’s Big Macs are most expensive and Chinese Big Macs are cheap. As The Economist explains, starting in 1986, they wanted to take a lighthearted look at whether currencies…

Debating Paid Sick Leave Laws

I wonder if we could say that Mayor de Blasio’s sick leave proposal dates back to 1895.  119 years ago, concerned with the harm that a “biscuit, bread, cake bakery or confectionery establishment” could inflict on its employees, New York…

Would Adam Smith Have Supported a Higher Minimum Wage?

Because it would be wonderful if we all knew Adam Smith, I was delighted that President Obama quoted him in a recent speech. However, Smith’s relevance to a minimum wage boost is a bit of a leap. Discussing economic mobility, the…

Confirmation Bias: A McDonald’s Wage Hike

After telling us that the price of a Big Mac would minimally rise if McDonald’s doubled its wages, The Huffington Post redacted its article. The Huffington Post story that first appeared on July 29 included these paragraphs: “McDonald’s can afford to pay its…

Minimum Wage: The Tradeoff

Should you support a $9.00 minimum wage? Expressed in a Boston Fed report, the competing arguments on both sides are persuasive. Proponents emphasize the additional spending that will be created, the minimal, if any, job losses, and their support for low…