Restaurant Die-Off Is First Casualty Of California’s $15 Minimum Wage

The good news is more people are cooking at home. I guess.

Look, reality is reality. Restaurants, many anyway, operate on thin margins. A forced higher wage means margins disappear as does the incentive to stay open.

If the work isn’t WORTH $15 an hour and the minimum wage is $15 an hour, that work will go away. It’s not complicated.

(From TheFederalistPapers.org)

San Francisco, an early adopter of the $15 wage. It’s now experiencing a restaurant die-off, minting jobless hash-slingers, cashiers, busboys, scullery engineers and line cooks as they get pink-slipped in increasing numbers. And the wage there hasn’t yet hit $15.

As the East Bay Times reported in January, at least 60 restaurants around the Bay Area had closed since September alone.

A recent study by Michael Luca at Harvard Business School and Dara Lee Luca at Mathematica Policy Research found that every $1 hike in the minimum wage brings a 14 percent increase in the likelihood of a 3.5-star restaurant on Yelp! closing.

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