Friday, September 14, 2012

Minimum Wage Job Mobility

Click to enlarge.

The chart above shows the circular area your job must be in if you are earning minimum wage and are "only" willing to spend one hour of your wages getting to and from work. It also assumes that the path to your job is a straight line. No turns allowed!

I'm using the I.R.S. business mileage deduction to calculate the total cost per mile. In theory, it factors in all the costs associated with using a vehicle (not just gasoline).

As of 2012, your job must be within 6.5 miles of your home (134 square miles). This is down from the 8.2 mile peak set in 1999 (212 square miles).

This compares somewhat unfavorably to what Jamie Dimon's $23.1 million pay package can do for him. His effective job search area is 201 million square miles (assuming 52 weeks x 50 hour workweeks).

The surface area of the earth is 197 million square miles. Surprising as it might seem, he does not appear to be constrained by rising transportation costs. Perhaps that explains some of his overwhelming optimism.

May 8, 2012
U.S. economy has a 'royal straight flush' - Jamie Dimon

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon was overwhelmingly optimistic Monday -- but was quick to say things would be even better were it not for government policies.

Royal flush or royally f**ked? You make the call. Sigh.

Source Data:
DOL: History of Federal Minimum Wage Rates
Business Mileage Reimbursement Rate


Stagflationary Mark said...

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon was overwhelmingly optimistic Monday -- but was quick to say things would be even better were it not for government policies.

Counting dividends and splits, JPM's stock has risen 18% since January 2, 2000. Unfortunately, the consumer price index has risen twice as much (36%).

As for those meddling government policies...

September 14, 2012
Money-Laundering Inquiry Is Said to Aim at U.S. Banks

Regulators, led by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, are close to taking action against JPMorgan Chase for insufficient safeguards, the officials said.


Last year, JPMorgan agreed to pay $88.3 million to the Treasury Department, which had accused the bank of thwarting United States sanctions by processing roughly $178.5 million for Cubans in 2005 and 2006. Even after bank officials spotted the questionable transactions in 2005, the Treasury said, they failed to report the problem to federal authorities. JPMorgan also made an improper $2.9 million loan in 2009 to a bank tied to Iran’s government-owned shipping line, according to the Treasury Department.

mab said...

I don't know about you, but I can't wait to read about all the JPM employees that are sure to get multi-million dollar whistleblower rewards from the Gov't. Most can't win, banksters can't lose. It all balances out in the end....sort of.

Those damn Gov't policies. Also, good thing the Federal Reserve isn't a Gov't entity! And good thing the bailouts weren't Gov't policies.


fried said...

glad to see you yesterday on CR. Re your remarks on retail employees and their failing prospects, the indifference expressed by a number of posters is very telling, even on the CR board. These workers, many of them women and older men forced out of the corporate job market, are being dismissed in Darwinian fashion as non-competitive workers best left behind. No recognition that they are still citizens who will need transfer payments to survive in some fashion if work, even minimum wage retail work, is not available. Whether you support Obama or not, the idea of a "winner take all" social structure is truly taking hold...with minimal concern for the cost of unproductive lives on the social fabric. Fewer and fewer folks are able to gather round the FIRE to support themselves. I don't want to weep for my country, I feel like screaming.

Stagflationary Mark said...


If I didn't know better I'd say your comment was packed with sarcasm. Good thing I know better! ;)

Stagflationary Mark said...


I was glad to see you yesterday on CR as well. I don't post there nearly as often as I once did.

Generally speaking, I will post a link. I will hang around 10 minutes to see if anyone wants to discuss it, nobody does, and then I :nytol:.

I figured people were either growing indifferent to what I had to say or were just becoming desensitized.

Like you, I thought yesterday was telling. It seemingly takes increasingly shocking data to get the same level of reaction.

I'm tempted to call it complacency. Sigh.

Stagflationary Mark said...


That "Who cares..." comment nearly got a full blown rant from me by the way. I toned it down when I realized the person really might not understand why they should care.

In hindsight, I'm glad I toned it down. I think that was indeed the case. I half expected to be debating that point for hours though. I was very thankful that it wasn't required of me.

Troy said...

The comment section at CR is . . . interesting. I have an ignore list about 5 pages long, which keeps most of my sanity.

sm_landlord has somewhat interesting things to say on occasion, but man the "landlord" thing is just like waving a red cape in front of me, LOL.

SFH rentals in many areas of my town are listed at 15% cash-on-cash rates now.

One interesting thing though is that compared to 3-4 years ago the income disparity drumbeat HAS been rising.

I remember searching for data and there was only that one UCSC study, but now there's dozens of data dumps -- even the census is getting on the act.

The laissez-faire clockspring of movement conservativism is starting to run out of pushback, I think.

But if DC can't start getting their act together, there's going to be some tough sledding for many more people.

This site: is supposed to be a production of tax-cutters, but my take-away from the data is that the top 5% can in fact handle about double the tax burden they have now.

Reducing their $2T net on $2.5T AGI down to $1.5T would not be the end of the world for them.

I wouldn't stop there, though, since I don't think the upper quintile should be made to pay for the lower quintiles' social expenses (that just results in the lower quintiles paying higher rents to the upper quintile in the end).

The toiling masses need to be uptaxed to cover rising Medicare and Gen X's social security burden (since the SSTF is only going to cover the baby boom's if we're lucky). shows, however, that we are a nation of children, really.

Stagflationary Mark said...


...but man the "landlord" thing is just like waving a red cape in front of me, LOL.

Had I been drinking as I read that, some of it would have come out my nose, lol. Seriously.

The red cape is an illusion that bulls chase! This whole economy is a bull fight! It all makes sense now!! ;)

Stagflationary Mark said...


Growing income inequality was a driving force for convincing me to become permabearish.

September 25, 2007
Automation and Inequality

Note that I mentioned Romney. Go figure.

Troy said...

If the 1% made their money from trading among themselves, there wouldn't be a problem.

But the 1%'s immense flow comes from the 99%.

It's an interesting study to determine how things get recirculated as it is.

I think I've said this before, but the physiocrat school was founded by a physiologist looking to model the French economy on the human circulatory system (which was just beginning to be understood too).

Economy needs money, but when the money leaves the bottom, and DC doesn't want to forcefully restore the balance, it's left to Bernanke.


Stagflationary Mark said...


But the 1%'s immense flow comes from the 99%.

Got tweezers?


In general, the best way to remove adult tick is mechanically. To facilitate prompt removal, fine-tipped tweezers can be used...