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Minimum wage increase could boost disposable income, consumer spending

Discussions about increasing the federal minimum wage have been prevalent for years, but a greater push to give consumers more disposable income and encourage more spending is gaining ground in Washington. Many think such a proposal could be good news for local businesses, which could see additional cash flow. These companies may need to ensure their cash and check processing strategies are efficient as possible as they cope with the increase in sales.

While the minimum wage can differ from state to state, the federal rate is currently set at $7.25 per hour, an amount that was last increased in 2009. The most recent budget proposal submitted by President Barack Obama would bump that rate to $9 per hour, if the bill is approved. Supporters of this measure claim it would allow workers to have more disposable income and increase their spending at local businesses, jumpstarting the economy and benefiting everyone involved in the transaction.

Entrepreneurs see idea as good for business, but would need to prepare
Even though not everyone supports the bill, many small-business owners seem content with the idea. A recent survey conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research on the behalf of Small Business Majority revealed 67 percent of entrepreneurs support a federal minimum wage increase. This trend was prevalent throughout both major political parties, indicating the potential for a higher minimum wage has more traction than originally thought.

"This new national poll confirms what we've been saying all along - increasing the minimum wage will help small businesses, not hurt us," said Lew Prince, a business owner and leader with Business for a Fair Minimum Wage. "As I recently testified before Congress, workers will spend their minimum wage increase at local businesses buying the basics they can't afford now. And adjusting the minimum wage annually for inflation would make it easier for businesses to predict labor costs and consumer demand."

If the minimum wage is boosted within the coming months, businesses may have to adjust their strategies to prepare for more business. Since many entrepreneurs believe higher pay will only increase their sales, they will need to ensure they are using the latest cash and check processing machines to effectively handle the additional transactions completed and spend more time with customers and keeping the store in order.

May 8, 2013