5 unexpected ways raising the minimum wage can change your life

Raising the minimum wage can do more than put more money in the back pocket of workers. It can, in some ways, change their lives.

Amazon announced Tuesday it will raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour from Nov. 1, giving hundreds of thousands of U.S. workers a pay raise. The federal minimum wage has been at $7.25 since July 2009 and, according to The Wall Street Journal, starting pay for U.S. workers ranged from $10 per hour to $14 per hour.

“We listened to our critics, thought hard about what we wanted to do, and decided we want to lead,” said Chief Executive Jeff Bezos. “We’re excited about this change and encourage our competitors and other large employers to join us.”

Amazon’s move is an indication that the public wants an increase in minimum wages, said Jonathan Schleifer, executive director at The Fairness Project, a nonprofit that advocates to raise the minimum wage in the U.S. through ballot initiatives. This will have an “incredibly profound” effect on the lives of 350,000 people who work at Amazon AMZN, +2.71% he said.

Read the rest on MarketWatch.