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Demand for workers pushes wages higher

Last updated October 27, 2021

By Tina Underwood

For a story about the worker shortage and increasing wages in the United States, Ross Norton of SC Biz News turns to two Furman University professors in the Department of Economics, Kailash Khandke and Jeffrey Yankow.

“The minimum wage debate that started a little before the pandemic, was highlighted during the pandemic, when workers in the service sector, restaurants, etc., felt that they were working long hours with little to no benefits, said Khandke, the Frederick W. Symmes Professor of Economics. “At the same time research on the poverty line and poverty threshold resulted in government intervention and trial programs with things like Universal Basic Income. So we may be seeing wages begin to go up in some of these low earning positions.”

Yankow, the David C. Garrett Jr. Professor of Economics, said, “Wages have been going up considerably for low-wage earners in nominal terms all summer. However, it is not clear whether real wages are increasing all that much given inflationary pressures in the cost of consumer goods.”

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