Research Report

Effects of a Higher Minimum Wage in the District of Columbia

Over the next two years, the minimum wage in DC will increase in stages, ultimately reaching $11.50 in July 2016, and thereafter DCs minimum wage will increase with inflation. Based on historical patterns for the DC metro area and an analysis of workers in the food service industry nationwide, we find little evidence that even a substantial increase in minimum wages in DC would result in lower employment. Our estimates of the relationship are imprecise, however, and we cannot rule out modest negative impacts.