Jobs, Wages & Income

The Retail Sector—New York’s Biggest Low-wage Employer Needs to Provide Higher Wages

March 22, 2016. Among all sectors, retail trade has the most low-wage workers in New York State. Over a half million (555,200) retail workers will benefit from an increase in the statewide minimum wage to $15 an hour. These workers make up nearly a fifth (18 percent) of the 3.2 million workers receiving a wage boost, although retail jobs represent one in nine of all New York jobs.

With the phased-in $15 minimum wage floor, 61 percent of all women … (read more)

Proposed EITC Expansion Is No Substitute for Proposed $15 Minimum Wage

March 18, 2016. The state’s EITC is an extremely important benefit to low- and moderate-income working families. There is considerable merit to Assemblyman Kolb’s proposed 50% enhancement to the state’s EITC, raising it form 30% to 45% of the federal EITC. However, the proposal is certainly not a substitute for raising the minimum wage. It is more appropriate to view the EITC and raising the minimum wage as complementary policies. See the complete brief issued jointly by the Fiscal Policy … (read more)

New York Economists Support a Statewide $15 Minimum Wage; Recent academic research shows it’s good for workers, businesses and the economy

March 14, 2016. More than 75 economists from throughout New York State joined together this week to send a message to Albany: a phased-in increase in the minimum wage to $15 by 2019 in New York City and by mid-2021 in the rest of the state is a prudent and much needed policy that would raise the incomes of struggling low-wage workers and boost their spending power without hurting the state’s economy.

The economists’ statement cites a number of academic … (read more)

Berkeley Report on Impact of $15 NY Minimum Wage Released

March 11, 2016. In a new report from the University of California at Berkeley, noted economist Michael Reich and colleagues take a comprehensive look at the likely impact of a $15 minimum wage in New York State.

This report assesses the broad impact on businesses and the overall economy and employment levels from the proposed phased-in $15 minimum wage. The report makes a significant contribution to the minimum wage literature since it  looks broadly across the economy and factors in … (read more)

Testimony at the Joint Legislative Public Hearing on the FY 2017 Executive Budget – Workforce Development

February 3, 2016. James Parrott testified at a New York State Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means Committees hearing on workforce development about the impace of a $15 an hour minimum wage.… (read more)

New York State Economic and Fiscal Outlook FY 2017

February 3, 2016. In its 26th annual New York State budget briefing book, the Fiscal Policy Institute analyzes and comments on Governor Andrew Cuomo’s FY 2017 Executive Budget.

The Executive Budget advances some bold and progressive proposals that well reflect the values and needs of New Yorkers. In particular, the governor has shown great leadership and vision in forcefully advocating for a first-in-the nation statewide $15 minimum wage. If enacted, the minimum wage increase would lift the incomes of … (read more)

Testimony: Overall Impact of a $15 State Minimum Wage

January 7, 2016. James Parrott testified at a New York State Senate Standing Committee on Labor hearing. In his conclusion, Parrott asserts that it would be sound public policy for New York State to phase in a $15 an hour minimum wage. Considerable economically sound research supports the conclusion that the businesses can accommodate such an increase. A higher wage floor would generate significant cost savings due to reduced turnover and there is room for modest price increases to ease … (read more)

A Fair Wage for Human Services Workers: Ensuring a government funded $15 per hour minimum wage for human services workers throughout NYS

December 9, 2015. A new report prepared by the FPWA, Human Services Council and FPI, documents the current state of the nonprofit sector providing State-funded human services and discusses the implications of the Governor’s proposed $15 an hour minimum wage. The groups support inclusion of the nonprofit sector workers in the wage increase and make the case for increased State funding in human service contracts.

More than 200,000 human services workers across NYS are the driving force behind services like … (read more)

Business profits in New York State have grown much faster than wages since 2001

December 1, 2015. In a new analysis, the Fiscal Policy Institute finds that business profits per worker in New York State increased by 61% from 2001-13, while labor compensation per worker has risen by only 34%, and the typical worker received wage increases of 25-29%, much less than inflation.

James Parrott, the Institute’s Deputy Director and Chief Economist stated: “These data confirm once again that most workers in New York have not been sharing in the fruits of the … (read more)

Fact Checking the Empire Center-American Action Forum Analysis of NY’s Proposed $15 Minimum Wage: Flawed Methods Produce Erroneous Results

November 19, 2015. James Parrott, Deputy Director and Chief Economist of the Fiscal Policy Institute, and Paul Sonn, General Counsel and Program Director of the National Employment Law Project, released this policy brief fact checking the Empire Center/American Action Forum report Higher Wages, Fewer Jobs. The report predicts significant job losses if Governor Cuomo’s proposal to increase New York’s minimum wage to $15 is enacted.

The Empire Center/American Action Forum report uses outdated economics that ignores both the troubling gap … (read more)