February 27, 2014

Yellen Affirms CBO

Minimum wage hike and jobs.

Federal Reserve chairman Janet Yellen began her term with a somewhat surprising statement regarding the minimum wage. Yellen refused to dismiss the CBO’s recent estimate that increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour as Democrats desire would result in the loss of 500,000 jobs, saying the CBO “is as qualified as anyone to evaluate the literature” on the effects of mandating wage hikes. She added that she “wouldn’t want to argue with their assessment.” Barack Obama didn’t appoint her to chair the Fed because she’s a supply-side economist, so her acknowledgement of economic reality here is interesting, and it might just mean the White House should back off from insisting that the “consensus view of economists” is contrary to the CBO.

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