Chart Detail

Value of the minimum wage, 1960–2011

Minimum wage
Current dollars 2011 dollars
1960 $1.00 $6.65
1967 1.40 8.25
1973 1.60 7.24
1979 2.90 8.38
1989 3.35 5.87
1990 3.80 6.34
1991 4.25 6.85
1996 4.75 6.78
1997 5.15 7.20
2000 5.15 6.73
2007 5.85 6.35
2008 6.55 6.84
2009 7.25 7.60
2011 7.25 7.25
Period averages
1960s $1.29 $7.91
1970s 2.07 8.02
1980s 3.33 6.92
1990s 4.53 6.70
2000s 5.57 6.46
Percent change
1979–1989 -29.9%
1989–2000 14.6
2000–2011 7.8
1967–2011 -12.1

Source: Authors' analysis of U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division (2009)

Updated May 17, 2012

Documentation and methodology

Data, deflated using CPI-U-RS, are from the U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division (2009); http://www.dol.gov/whd/minwage/chart.htm.

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