Money Money

This show a pile of money with bands around packs of it.

Through the years, minimum wage has fluctuated. In Montana, the state was first noted to have a $1.60 hourly rate for minimum wage in 1975. This was on par with the federal minimum wage, which shared this same amount from 1948 to 1974. By 1990, wages were up to $6.50 in Montana, but only $3.80 federally. And in 2014, federal minimum wage was changed to $7.25 an hour which it remains at to this day. Many states have moved past this though, and 29 states have a higher wage. Only 7 states continue to have the federal minimum wage, those being Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, and Wyoming. The debate continues now with pushes around the country for a $15 an hour minimum wage. If this comes to fruition, it would boost the wages of 4.9 million Americans (as of February 2021) or 3.2% of the workforce in the U.S.

Now, due to covid, there was a spike in unemployment with 6.5 million Americans out of work. The dip has garnered more attention for this debate.

This debate is due to the wage increasing throughout history, so according to studies, the United States should be at $15 instead of $7.25. America’s minimum wage is projected to be around $27 by 2024. In his 2020 election campaign, Joe Biden vowed to push for a $15 hourly wage, so new legislation could still be in the works. Unfortunately, a $15 minimum wage is still a ways out. Wages have increased over the years in hopes of increasing employment, but even in 1968, with the rising wages, there was a 3.5%unemployment rate. 

Now with so many Americans pushing for a massive increase in the wage, financial experts are worried. Their fear is that inflation would skyrocket. Senator John Thune of South Dakota tweeted that he made $6 an hour as a kid, and that adjusted to account for inflation is equal to $15 nowadays. But on the other hand, U.S representative Dean Philips has said, “We want to see Americans’ wages go up, we want to see more jobs created — not fewer — and we want to see businesses thrive, especially small businesses that are the backbone of our economy” (CNBC).

 Statistics from

Statistics from