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Curt Grimm Comments on Minimum Wage Increase

Jan 29, 2014
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Hot Topic Alert: Jan. 29, 2014

Curt Grimm, professor and Charles E. Taff Chair of Economics and Strategy for the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business, is available to expand on his comments, below, about the executive order to raise the minimum wage for federal contractors.

Announced by President Obama in his State of the Union address, the increase, $10.10 an hour, from $7.25, affects workers under new federal contracts.

Grimm comments on implications for workers and the broader movement to increase the minimum wage:

"These are generally not part-time or student workers, but full-time workers for whom the current minimum wage is well short of a living wage in fully supporting themselves and perhaps family. Income inequality is one of the foremost economic issues of our times and this is a positive. 

"However, the problem for workers in any minimum wage increase is that it accelerates the substitution of technology for workers. 

"Ultimately, this increase for federal contractors adds momentum to raising the minimum wage on a broader scale. I think this, along with the increases legislated by some Maryland counties, would influence Maryland legislators concerning a statewide increase." 

Grimm, a 2010-2011 UMD Distinguished Scholar-Teacher, has focused his research on the interface of business and public policy with strategic management, and with emphasis on competition, competition policy, deregulation and microeconomic reform. 

Contact him at cgrimm@rhsmith.umd.edu or 301-405-2235.

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About the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business 

The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 12 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and part-time MBA, executive MBA, online MBA, MS in business, PhD and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.