Minimum Wage

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This critical literature review will focus on the impact of the National Minimum Wage on employment. This is an area we have had to familiarise ourselves with more and more throughout the last ten years because of the controversial effect of its instalment in April 1999 and its ever increasing minimum wage amount which causes most concern.
The application of a few statistics should help summarise the ever increasing minimum wage and the sheer scale of people affected by its introduction. The national minimum wage has increased by a staggering 59% in the last ten years; from £3.60 in April 1999 to £5.73 in October 2008. (HRM, 2008) According to George Sayers Bain (1999) as from April 1999, the year of its instalment , “some two million low paid workers will gain. To put that into a different context is one in twelve employees; one in three house workers; one in five part time workers.
The obvious reason for its introduction was to reduce poverty pay levels while at the same time decreasing the wage differentials of the minimum wage to the median wage of all workers. This is known as ‘the bite’ and is commonly used to assess the effectiveness of the minimum wage. (LPC, Low Pay Commission, 2007)
As stated above the intention of this review is to firstly establish the effect of the National minimum wage on employment; justifying it as a positive, negative or mutual effect. Secondly to help incarcerate the purpose even more the retail sector will be focused on purely because it entices the most jobs of low paid workers. Although literature was most desired based solely on the United Kingdom some are well known International studies but they all confine to the same principles making them in most cases equally relevant. The literatures that have been used were carefully selected in order to give the view of both sides of the coin.

Perhaps the…...

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