In his July 4 letter, “The consequences aren’t surprising,” Richard Berman made omissions and distortions in claiming that our 1994 American Economic Review article “was debunked in the same economics journal that originally published it.”
Mr. Berman neglected to mention that the comment that he referenced relied in part on data on fast-food restaurants that he assembled. If the one franchisee that Mr. Berman included for Pennsylvania is dropped from the sample, the results show faster job growth in New Jersey restaurants than in Pennsylvania’s after New Jersey increased its minimum wage. The most accurate and comprehensive employment data available from payroll tax records collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms our findings and casts doubt on the representativeness of Mr. Berman’s data. Finally, most studies published in the past 20 years found a negligible impact of minimum-wage increases on employment but a sizable increase in earnings of low-wage workers.
David Card, Berkeley, Calif.
The writer is a professor of economics at the University of California at Berkeley.
Alan Krueger, Princeton, N.J.
The writer is a professor of economics and
public affairs at Princeton University.