A year ago, I brought attention to a Canadian Public Policy article on poverty and the minimum wage in Ontario. A notable finding of the study was that the overlap between those who earn minimum wage and those who are in poverty was surprisingly small, small enough to conclude - as I did - that "increasing the minimum wage is only slightly more effective as an anti-poverty measure as would be distributing money at random across households." A few months later, I came across a study that found much the same results in the United States.
I knew that policy analysts in the Quebec government were working on a similar project and had heard that they had found similar results. That study has finally been made public, and is one of a set of articles on the minimum wage. Even better, it would seem that Pierre Fortin has fleshed out and put into digital form the literature survey I blogged about over here (has it really been four years?!?).
But it's this article by Jean-François Mercier and Martine Poulin that has the numbers I'm going to talk about below. A very nice feature of the study is that it pays particular attention to those earning just above minimum wage.