US minimum wage hike may hurt corporate profits, says Barack Obama
"It might have some modest impact on their profits," he said in an on-line video question and answer session sponsored by Google+.
"But the fact of the matter is, if we're going to have a society in which we've got broad-based prosperity, those same businesses also have to worry about do those customers have money in their pockets."
Corporate profits are at record highs, helped by increases in US worker productivity, Obama said. At the same time, wages and income have remained stagnant, he added.
"There are a lot of countries that are competing very well - some of our toughest competitors, countries like Germany for example - who have seen greater wage and income growth," he said.
Laying out his second-term agenda in his State of the Union speech on Tuesday, Obama asked Congress to raise the minimum wage to $9 an hour from the current $7.25. The wage hike would lift many workers out of poverty and at the same time boost consumer spending, a key component of economic growth, Obama and his aides have said.
A woman in the Google+ video session asked how raising the minimum wage would affect her cost of living as companies raised their prices to accommodate the need to pay workers more.
The president replied that companies could likely absorb increases in the
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