Quick update on my June 24 post on job growth post-minimum wage—we can now add South Dakota’s May figures for labor force, jobs, and unemployment, plus revised figures from April, from the Department of Labor:
May saw South Dakota reach another all-time high in willing workers and actual jobs. Now let’s look at the monthly changes in labor force, jobs, and unemployed workers, keeping in mind that South Dakota increased its minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 on January 1, 2015, and that opponents of that hike told us that that increase would kill jobs:
|Year||Month||chg: labor force||chg: jobs||chg: unemp|
To update figures I provided on June 24:
- Average monthly change in workforce in 2014: 165.
- Average monthly change in workforce in 2015: 1,179.
- Average monthly change in jobs in 2014: 240.
- Average monthly change in jobs in 2015: 742.
Since January’s minimum wage increase, every month this year has seen more people join South Dakota’s workforce than any month in 2014. Every month this year except for January has seen more new jobs created than any month in 2014. The minimum wage increase coincides with a reversal of a downward trend in both workforce participation and job creation.
In 2014, South Dakota saw a net gain of 2,880 jobs. In the first five months of 2015, South Dakota has seen a net gain of 3,710 jobs.
Again, to be absolutely clear, these two tables do not allow us to conclude that increasing the minimum wage creates jobs or draws more people to look for work. But these two tables do allow us to conclude that increasing the minimum wage has not caused South Dakota to lose jobs.