The Rise of the New West

Benjamin Schultz

Benjamin Schultz, Ph.D. Geography

In terms of its significance to symbolism and cultural imagery, perhaps nothing is more quintessentially “American” than the Intermountain West (Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming). The West is a living metaphor for values that so many Americans identify with, such as freedom, independence, individuals and self-reliance. The region is also home to some of our most iconic national parks, like Yellowstone, Glacier and Grand Canyon.

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High-paid finance jobs are moving outside of big cities

Andrey Kamenov

Andrey Kamenov, Ph.D. Probability and Statistics

It shouldn’t be surprising to see that the average payroll is highly dependent on location. Let’s take the finance industry as an example. As evidenced by the U.S. Census Bureau County Business Patterns data, the average annual payroll by state in 2012 ranged from $48,000 (which is more than twice the annual payroll of someone working full-time for minimum wage) in South Dakota to $140,000 and $146,000 in Connecticut and the District of Columbia respectively. The only state where an even larger number was registered is New York, with an average annual payroll of $190,000.

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What Has the Minimum Wage Done Across Time, and What Does it Have to do With Employment?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

With minimum wage laws becoming more of a topic in 2013 – and in 2014 as well – here is a review of what the minimum wage has been across states through the years since 1938.

First, some background. The minimum wage was first introduced in the United States at the federal level in 1938 at $0.25 per hour. Since then, the minimum wage has increased 2,800 percent to $7.25 per hour. Interestingly, the 2,800 percent growth rate comes out to a 4.6 percent average annual growth rate, or about one percent faster than average wages have grown over the same period.

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