When raising the minimum wage, all that glitters isn't gold

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When Raising the Minimum Wage, All That Glitters Isn't Gold

Fast-food employees in New York have picketed and protested for higher wages for months. Last week, New York's Wage Board approved the $15 minimum wage for fast-food workers.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he's in support of the hike, which will be slowly phased in and only affects fast-food chains with more than 30 stores.

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When raising the minimum wage, all that glitters isn't gold
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 10: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (C) speaks in support of raising the minimum wage for the state of New York to $15 per hour on September 10, 2015 in New York City. Biden said he would like to see the federal minimum wage risen to $12 per hour. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 10: Workers who have fought for a raise in the minimum wage celebrate at a political rally where U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced their support to raise the minimum wage for the state of New York to $15 per hour on September 10, 2015 in New York City. U.S. Vice President Joe Biden also said he would like to see the federal minimum wage risen to $12 per hour. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
FORT LAUDERDALE, FL - SEPTEMBER 10: Protesters in support of a $15 an hour minimum wage stand together on September 10, 2015 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles are among cities that have adopted a $15 an hour minimum wages. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, ME - SEPTEMBER 7: Douglas Born, of the Southern Mainen Labor Council, speaks at a labor day rally Monday, September 7, 2015 in Portland, Maine. The rally was aimed at honoring striking FairPoint workers and raising awareness of the effort to increase the minimum wage. (Photo by Joel Page/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON D.C., July 22, 2015-- Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks during a strike rally, demanding to raise the federal minimum wage to 15 dollars per hour on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., the United States, on July 22, 2015. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 22: Labor leaders, workers and activists attend a rally for a $15 minimum hourly wage on July 22, 2015 in New York City. A panel appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo recommended on Wednesday that the minimum wage be raised for employees of fast-food chain restaurants throughout the state. The panel recommended that the $15 rate be phased in by December 31, 2018 for New York City and by July 1, 2021 for the rest of the state. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JULY 22: A protestor holds a sign in Upper Senate Park during a rally on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 22, 2015, to push for a raise to the minimum wage to $15 an hour. (Photo By Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)
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But as payday just got sweeter for some, hundreds of thousands are angry as the minimum wage will remain at $8.75 an hour for other industry jobs.

The federally mandated minimum wage is $7.25 an hour, but wages differ from state to state.
Currently, 29 states have a minimum wage higher than $7.25 an hour.

Many states increased the minimum wage at the beginning of 2015, including Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia.

Additionally, some of the country's biggest cities are also on their way to passing their state's minimum wage including Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Chicago and Seattle.

Seattle's current minimum wage is $11 an hour. It'll be at $15 an hour by 2018. But, the padded paycheck for minimum wage employees seems to be backfiring.

"The minimum wage here in Seattle went to $11 an hour in April, on it's way to $15 an hour by 2018, and some people have figured out that with the pay raise they make too much money to stay on certain welfare programs," reporter Dan Springer told Fox News.

A Fox News article suggests that employees are asking bosses for less hours so they can stay on benefit programs for assistance with child care, rent and food costs.

So will the same play out in New York and other cities across the country? Skeptics are worried.

"It does inject money into the economy which is a good thing. On the other hand it does end up costing people their jobs. Some people who are worth it at $7.25 an hour aren't worth it at $9.25 or so on. So it's a mixed bag," Peter Coy told Bloomberg Business.

A study conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Diego found that minimum wage hikes actually had a negative impact on the economy, employment and income growth.

At the end of the day, if workers get paid more money to make that burger for you, you might end up paying more for that burger.
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