LA Times: California minimum wage hike hits L.A. apparel industry: ‘The exodus has begun’

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There are some people who think that we just rail against arbitrary minimum wage increases because it hurts business owners. They are very wrong. The main reason we point out the trouble with extending a minimum wage far beyond the actual market wage for unskilled labor is because it will put people, often people who are really struggling already, out of work.

There are “winners” in a minimum wage hike. Politicians. Unions and their members who have contracts based off of the official minimum wage. In the short run union members may see a rise in wages. Unions will then see increased dues. But these gains will be short lived if realized at all.  One can not simply will the market mechanism into submission.

(From The LA Times)

Last week American Apparel, the biggest clothing maker in Los Angeles, said it might outsource the making of some garments to another manufacturer in the U.S., and wiped out about 500 local jobs. The company still employs about 4,000 workers in Southern California.

“The exodus has begun,” said Sung Won Sohn, an economist at Cal State Channel Islands and a former director at Forever 21. “The garment industry is gradually shrinking and that trend will likely continue.”

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