Rosenbloom: Higher minimum wage could help Iowa economy

March 11, 2021

Dr. Joshua RosenbloomJoshua Rosenbloom, professor and department chair, was interviewed in a March 10 Daily Iowan story, "U.S. House passes $1.9 trillion relief package, won’t include minimum wage increase."

Rosenbloom said it’s hard to make the argument that the minimum wage shouldn’t be any higher than it currently is, and that while $15 per hour doesn’t seem implausible, it’s difficult to know what the right number is. He also said one could argue that a minimum wage increase could help the economy in states like Iowa in the long run, and referenced FDR’s New Deal, which included the introduction of a minimum wage under the Fair Labor Standards Act and had a positive effect on a significant portion of the nation’s southern states.

“I think the other complexity about minimum wage is that there’s an immediate effect on the employers of workers who are at or near the minimum wage, like fast food restaurants and other places like that,” Rosenbloom said. “And then there’s a longer term effect which leads to adaptation in the way that jobs are designed and structured and lead to increases in workforce training and skill acquisition that make everybody better off.”

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