The introduction of minimum wage laws in five non-agricultural sectors has not been associated with a significant loss in employment in the years following their promulgation – a period when most sectors also saw a significant increase in real hourly wages. Indeed, several sectors recorded an increase in employment. However, in some sectors there is evidence of a relatively small reduction in the hours worked by employees. On the whole, the effects of minimum wages are varied.
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Written by Haroon Bhorat, Professor, School of Economics and Director: DPRU, University of Cape Town and Natasha Mayet, Researcher, Development Policy Research Unit.
This article was first published on the Econ3x3 website – Accessible policy-relevant research and expert commentaries on unemployment and employment, income distribution and inclusive growth in South Africa.