Mexico’s minimum wage: Stingy by any measure

August 14, 2014

08/16/14 The Economist

piggy bank with coinsBASILIO GONZÁLEZ is an unusually well-paid Mexican public servant. The 70-year-old’s total pay this year will be 2.8m pesos ($213,000). That is ironic, considering that for 23 years he has been president of the National Minimum Salary Commission. During that time the minimum wage has dropped by 43% after accounting for inflation, according to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), a part of the United Nations. It varies by region but currently averages 66 pesos a day. At that rate, a recipient would have to work every day for 116 years to earn what Mr González will make this year.

Does Mr González deserve his generous haul? Judging by the length of his tenure, Mexican authorities appear to think so. Even before he took office, wage suppression had been an essential part of Mexico’s successful anti-inflation drive. Since 1991, annual inflation has fallen from more than 22% to less than 4%.

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Mexico Mulls Over Raising It’s Shockingly Low Minimum Wage

August 11, 2014

08/09/14 Fox News Latino

peso by Guanatos GwynNational attention in Mexico has focused on the country’s shockingly low minimum wage after the Mexico City government suggested it could act to increase the local minimum.

The debate has highlighted widespread dissatisfaction with the minimum wage of 67.29 pesos per day, or about $5. But suggestions that it be raised have drawn howls of protest from business chambers, who say raising it would only spur inflation.

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Mexico Replaces China as U.S. Low-Cost Supplier

June 15, 2012

Bloomberg Business Week, 6/14/2012

 The cheap labor that is helping Mexico surpass China as a low-cost supplier of manufacturing goods to the U.S. and lured companies including Nissan Motor Co. has restrained progress for many of the country’s 112 million citizens.

Julio Don Juan makes $400 a month at a noisy, cramped Mexico City call center. Without a raise in three years, he says he had to pull his 7-year-old son out of a special-needs school he can no longer afford.

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