Minimum Wages Set to Increase in Many States in 2017 – By  Eric Morath Dec. 30, 2016 5:30 a.m. ET


About 4.4 million low-wage workers across the country are slated to receive a raise

Workers at a McDonald’s Corp. location in New York. At the start of 2017, the minimum wage for fast-food workers in the city will rise to $12 an hour, just one of many increases to the pay floor across the country to begin the new year.ENLARGE

Workers at a McDonald’s Corp. location in New York. At the start of 2017, the minimum wage for fast-food workers in the city will rise to $12 an hour, just one of many increases to the pay floor across the country to begin the new year. Photo: Richard Drew/Associated Press

Minimum wages will increase in 20 states at the start of the year, a shift that will lift pay for millions of individuals and shed light on a long-running debate about whether mandated pay increases at the bottom do more harm or good for workers.

In Massachusetts, the minimum wage will rise $1, to $11 an hour, a change that affects about 291,000 workers. In California, the minimum goes up 50 cents, to $10.50 an hour, boosting pay for 1.7 million individuals.

Wages are also going up in many Republican-led states, where politicians have traditionally been skeptical of the benefits of minimum-wage increases.

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