Technical Paper Simulating the Effects of a $15 an Hour Federal Minimum Wage on Poverty and Resources
Linda Giannarelli, Kevin Werner
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This technical report describes in more detail the methods used in “Exploring the Effects of a $15 an Hour Federal Minimum Wage on Poverty, Earnings, and Net Family Resources.” We use the Urban Institute’s Analysis of Transfers, Taxes, and Income Security (ATTIS) microsimulation model to assess how a minimum wage of $15 an hour might affect families’ economic well-being, considering interactions with taxes and benefits and analyzing aggregate impacts and the variation in impacts across families. In the aggregate, reductions in benefits and increases in taxes total slightly over a quarter of the increase in gross wages. A large majority of affected workers would experience higher net resources, and in a scenario that includes some job loss, only 3 percent of workers with an hourly wage increase would see more than a 1 percent reduction in annual family resources. This document provides a case study of how a comprehensive microsimulation model can help assess the impacts of a change in policy with numerous secondary impacts.

Research Areas Economic mobility and inequality Social safety net Race and equity
Tags Economic well-being From Safety Net to Solid Ground Workers in low-wage jobs Wages and nonwage compensation Poverty Minimum wage
Policy Centers Income and Benefits Policy Center
Research Methods ATTIS Microsimulation Model
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