From Ironman at Political Calculations:
In terms of jobs lost, that means that 2,234,383 of the jobs lost in the U.S. economy since 2006 have been jobs that were directly impacted by the series of minimum wage increases that were mandated by the federal government in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
Interestingly, the average number of employed members of the civilian labor force in 2006 was 144,427,000. In 2010, the average number of employed members of the civilian labor force in the U.S. was 5,363,000 less, standing at 139,064,000.
So, in percentage terms of the change in total employment level from 2006 to 2010, jobs affected by the federal minimum wage hikes of 2007, 2008 and 2009 account for41.8% of the total reduction in jobs seen since 2006.
And from a later post from Ironman comes this striking graphic (posted with permission) which shows the trend in teen employment as a proportion of the teen population aged 16-19 since November 2006. The minimum wage will negatively affect the lowest skilled of the lowest skilled - those with the least experience - i.e. teens.
Teen employment began dropping almost a full year before the recession began as businesses saw the writing on the wall that came with the Democratic win in Congress in '06. The minimum wage was going to go up and when minimum wage jobs came open, many were going to go unfilled. The recession only made things worse, even through a period of deflation. The employment proportions have continued a downward trend as the economy moved out of recession, although the deceleration seems to have lessened during the past year.
So a perfect storm hit the low-skilled labor market. The increase in the minimum wage made it less lucrative for firms to hire low skilled people and the recession piled on. To what, if any, extent did the minimum wage increase make the recession worse than it would otherwise have been?
Update: Ironman, always on the job, has an answer to that last question.