Even Coffee Costing More as Minimum Wage Laws Kick In


Maybe America can learn something here.

With New Zealand’s minimum wage hitting the equivalent of about $12 an hour in U.S. dollars, consumers of even the most basic purchases are starting to feel the pinch.

And for New Zealanders who start their day with a cup of coffee — as so many Americans do — are getting hit with price increases first thing in the morning.

According to Stuff, a news website based in Fairfax, New Zealand, the price of a cup of coffee at the New Zealand chain Mojo has gone up 10 cents per cup as the country’s minimum wage increased to $16.50 (New Zealand) an hour.

And it’s not stopping there.

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The minimum wage increase that just went into effect is the first step in a process that will take it to $20 an hour by 2020. That’s about $14.60 at the current exchange right, or almost the $15 an hour America’s “fight for $15” crowd (like socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders) is fixated on.

Consumers, of course, aren’t the only ones being hurt.

The very workers who are supposed to benefit from minimum wage hikes might find themselves having no job at all, let alone one they don’t think pays enough by the hour.

As Stuff reports, “Modelling from the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment found the wage hike could lead to the loss of 3,000 jobs.”

Will job losses from a higher minimum wage be more than liberals realize?

To an American, 3,000 jobs might not sound like much. But New Zealand’s entire population is only 4.7 million, according to the statistical website Worldometers. In the U.S., with its population of 320 million and an economy that contains many times the size of New Zealand’s minimum-wage level employment, the ramifications of minimum-wage hikes can be much more severe.

None of this is a surprise to conservatives with a healthy distrust of the government, who have long known the problems that raising the government-mandated wage brings to consumers in the form of higher prices, and to workers in the form of lost job opportunities.

In California, where Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill last year that would raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2022, some economists project a loss of as many as 400,000 jobs. And the Golden State isn’t the only place where minimum wage madness is showing its effects.

Last year, fast-food giant Wendy’s announced it is adding self-service “kiosks” to eliminate employees. McDonald’s made a similar announcement the year before.

That doesn’t stop “progressives” from continuing to push the wage hike, but that’s mainly because “progressives” don’t realize businesses actually make payrolls by making money.

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And businesses make money by selling their product for more than it costs to produce and serve it.

If it costs more to produce and serve the product, businesses can raise their prices — as Mojo just did in New Zealand.

But when that gets to be too much for consumers, the other option is for the business to reduce the cost of producing and serving its product. And that means cutting the jobs that go into it.

New Zealanders, currently governed by the left-wing Labour Party, are already getting hit with the price increase. The job losses are sure to follow.

Maybe American can learn something here before it’s too late.

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Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro desk editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015.
Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015. Largely a product of Catholic schools, who discovered Ayn Rand in college, Joe is a lifelong newspaperman who learned enough about the trade to be skeptical of every word ever written. He was also lucky enough to have a job that didn't need a printing press to do it.