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经济学人:最低工资标准 多少才合理

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Leaders

社论
Minimum wages
最低工资标准
The logical floor
多少才合理
Moderate minimum wages do more good than harm. They should be set by technocrats not politicians
实施适度的最低工资标准利大于弊,但是它们应该由技术专家而不是领导层来设定。
ON BOTH sides of the Atlantic politicians are warming to the idea that the lowest-paid can be helped by mandating higher wages.
欧美各国领导人逐渐开始赞同提高工资水平可以帮助贫困人群这一观点。
Barack Obama wants to raise America's federal minimum wage by 40% from 7.25 to 10.10 an hour, and more than three-quarters of Americans support the idea.
奥巴马总统打算将联邦最低工资标准提高40%,时薪从7.25美元升为10.10美元,对此四分之三以上的美国人表示支持。

In Germany, one of the few big rich-world countries still without a national wage floor, the incoming coalition government has just agreed on an across-the-board hourly minimum of 8.50 from 2015.

尚且没有设定最低工资标准的发达国家寥寥可数,德国是其中之一,但新成立的联合政府已经协商达成一致,计划于2015年起全面实行时薪8.50欧元的最低工资标准。
In Britain, which has had a minimum wage since 1999, the opposition Labour Party is keen to cajole firms into voluntarily paying higher living wages.
而英国在1999年起就已经实施最低工资标准,其反对党工党比较擅长于游说企业主们自愿支付更高的最低生活工资。
For free-market types, including The Economist, fiddling with wages by fiat sets off alarm bells.
对于包括本刊《经济学人》在内的劳动力自由市场而言,通过法律规定来调整工资水准的做法会带来一定弊端。
In a competitive market anything that artificially raises the price of labour will curb demand for it, and the first to lose their jobs will be the least skilled—the people intervention is supposed to help.
对于竞争激烈的市场而言,任何人为提高劳动力成本的举措都会抑制劳动力的需求,而且首当其冲的失业者会是那些缺乏专业技术的工人们—这样一来人为干预是有一定作用的。
That is why Milton Friedman called minimum wages a form of discrimination against the low-skilled; and it is why he saw topping up the incomes of the working poor with public subsidies as a far more sensible means of alleviating poverty.
这就是为什么米尔顿·弗里德曼称最低工资标准是对那些没有专业技术的劳动者的歧视;此外,他认为通过分发国家补贴的方式来提高贫困人群的收入从而缓解他们贫困状况这种做法更为明智。
Scepticism about the merits of minimum wages remains this newspaper's starting-point.
本刊对于实行最低工资标准的好处一直持怀疑态度。
But as income inequality widens and workers' share of national income shrinks, the case for action to help the low-paid grows.
但是,随着收入差距扩大以及工人们所获收入占社会总工资比例下降,帮助贫困工人一事显得日益紧迫。
Addressing the problem through subsidies for the working poor is harder in an era of austerity, when there are many other pressing claims on national coffers.
在今天这个法制社会里,通过给贫困工人们分发国家补贴的方式来解决此问题甚是艰难,因为还有诸多其他方面需要政府开支。
Other policy options, such as confiscatory taxes, are unattractive.
诸如征收没收性赋税等措施也并不可取。
Nor is a moderate minimum wage as undesirable as neoclassical purists suggest.
正如新古典主义纯粹主义者所言,设定适度的最低工资标准同样不会取得理想效果。
Unlike those in textbooks, real labour markets are not perfectly competitive.
不同于书本上的描述,现实中的劳动力市场其实并不属于绝对竞争市场。
Since workers who want to change jobs face costs and risks, employers may be able to set pay below its market-clearing rate.
由于那些想跳槽的工人们面临着一定成本和风险,雇主们便可能以低于其公开规定工薪的水平来支付他们的工资。
A minimum wage, providing it is not set too high, could thus boost pay with no ill effects on jobs.
只要最低工资标准设定的不算太高,那么它就能够在不影响就业的情况下提高工资水平。
French lessons
法国的前车之鉴
Empirical evidence supports that argument.
历史的经验验证了以上观点。
In flexible economies a low minimum wage seems to have little, if any, depressing effect on employment.
在较灵活的经济体中,实施最低工资标准似乎对就业的影响即使有也是很小的。
America's federal minimum wage, at 38% of median income, is one of the rich world's lowest.
美国联邦最低工资标准是其中值工资的38%,这一标准是发达国家里最低的。
Some studies find no harm to employment from federal or state minimum wages, others see a small one, but none finds any serious damage.
一些研究表明联邦或者州设的最低工资标准并不会对就业产生消极影响,另一些研究也表明这种影响很小,但是目前还没有数据显示设定最低工资标准会严重影响就业,
Britain's minimum wage, at around 47% of median income, with a lower rate for young people, also does not seem to have pushed many people out of work.
英国的最低工资标准是其人均工资水平的47%,并且对于年幼者而言更是有所下降,但是这似乎也并未使很多人失业。
High minimum wages, however, particularly in rigid labour markets, do appear to hit employment.
然而,如果最低工资标准较高,尤其是在那些管制较严的劳动力市场,就业似乎也会受到影响。
France has the rich world's highest wage floor, at more than 60% of the median for adults and a far bigger fraction of the typical wage for the young.
法国的最低工资标准是发达国家中最高的,其中成年人的占中值工资的60%以上,年幼者的最低工资标准占中值工资的比例则更大。
This helps explain why France also has shockingly high rates of youth unemployment: 26% for 15- to 24-year-olds.
这也是为什么法国的失业率较高的原因——法国15到24岁年轻人的平均失业率为26%。
Theory and practice suggest two lessons for governments contemplating setting or changing minimum wages.
理论与实践两方面的经验给了各国领导人关于是否设定或者更改最低工资标准两点启示。
The first is to ensure that the level is pretty low—say, less than 50% of the median, with lower levels for less productive people such as the young and long-term unemployed. Germany risks breaking this rule.
其一是要确保最低工资标准相对较低,务必要低于中值工资的50%,并且对于那些生产效率较低人群,比如年幼者和长期失业者这一标准要更低。
Its proposed level is, by one calculation, 62% of the median wage.
德国的做法很可能与此相背,他们的最低工资标准为中值工资的62%。
One in six German workers is paid less than that, suggesting that jobs will be lost, especially in the less productive east of the country.
而六分之一德国人的工资低于这一水平,这意味着很多人将面临失业,尤其是在劳动力效率较低的东德。
Similarly the living wage which campaigners are calling for in Britain is 20% higher than the minimum wage.
与此类似,在英国一些人倡导的最低生活工资比最低工资标准还要高出20%,
That could hit employment.
这会严重影响到就业。
Though America's proposed increase is huge, the minimum wage would still be only about 50% of the median.
尽管美国对最低工资标准的提升幅度较大,但是其最低工资标准仍然将只占中值工资的50%。
A second lesson is that politicians should give the power to set minimum wages to technocrats.
其二是领导层应该将设定最低工资标准一事留给技术专家们解决。
In Britain, the floor is adjusted annually on the advice of economists and statisticians in the Low Pay Commission; it has generally advanced gradually.
在英国,这一标准每年都会根据低工资委员会的经济学家和统计学家的建议予以适当调整;并且总体来看呈逐年上升趋势。
In America, the federal floor is set by politicians and adjusted irregularly in huge increments.
而美国联邦最低工资标准是由领导层设定的,而且每次调整增幅较大,也没什么规律可言,
That does no favours to American workers or their employers.
这对美国的劳动者和企业雇主而言都没有益处。
Finally, governments should remember that minimum wages are a palliative.
最后,各政府应该谨记实施最低工资标准只能起到有限的作用。
They should not distract attention from more fundamental causes of low wages—such as a lack of education and skills—and the efforts to address them.
他们不能忽略导致部分劳动者工资水平过低的根源—例如受教育程度不高和缺乏相关技术培训,当然各国在此问题上所做的努力也是不够的。
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adj. 不吸引人注意的;没有魅力的;不美丽的

 
address [ə'dres]

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adj. 偏僻的,遥远的,远程的,(感情等)距离很大

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n. 财产,房地产,状态,遗产

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