What minimum wage buys, then and now
The federal minimum wage was first set in 1938, at 25 cents an hour. Here's a decade-by-decade look, starting in 1950, at the buying power of minimum wage.
By Leah Konen, The Fiscal Times
Often looked to as a model era, the 1950s may have been nearly as picture-perfect as "Leave it to Beaver" seemed to suggest -- minimum wage workers could pay rent for a month for less than a week and a half of full-time work -- or catch Disney's "Cinderella" for just over a half-hour of labor.
Minimum wage: $0.75 per hour
Gas: $0.27 or 22 minutes
Movie ticket: $0.48 or 38 minutes
Rent: $42 or 56 hours
By 1960, the minimum wage of $1 an hour had not quite kept up with inflation, making rent a bit less affordable -- though still not quite two weeks of minimum-wage work. On the other hand, filling up the Corvette was actually relatively cheaper -- it took just under 20 minutes of work to get a gallon of gas.
Minimum wage: $1 per hour
Gas: $0.31 or 19 minutes
Movie ticket: $0.69 or 41 minutes
Rent: $71 or 71 hours
read the article to see what each decade bought with minimum wages
http://money.msn.com/personal-finance/s … id=6952105
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