If the federal government raises the minimum wage to $15 per hour, how much would this increase the average total income of families below the poverty line?
A 2019 study by the Congressional Budget office found that raising the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 per hour would increase the average reported cash income of families below the poverty line by about 5.2%, or $589 per year. Reported cash income accounts for only one-fifth of all income received by low-income households. The rest is comprised of unreported cash and non-cash government benefits like Food Stamps, Medicaid, housing, and a wide array of other programs. In total, this averages close to $60,000 per year. Thus, an extra $589 would increase their overall income by about 1%. The CBO also found that raising the minimum wage to $15 would give 81% of the resultant wage increases to families above the poverty line and "increase joblessness, reduce business income, raise prices, and lower total output in the economy."