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Germany takes step towards national minimum wage

Germany's plans for a national minimum wage took a major step forward Wednesday with the formal adoption of draft legislation by the government. The German cabinet approved the plan to establish a fixed national minimum wage of 8.50 euros ($11.70) to be phased in from 2015 and fully in place from 2017. "The minimum wage is coming. It's been approved by the cabinet. It will create greater pay justice and will be good for social cohesion as a whole in Germany," said Labour Minister Andrea Nahles, who drew up the draft legislation.

California city weighs minimum wage of $12.30, among nation's highest

By Laila Kearney RICHMOND, California (Reuters) - A California city in the pricey San Francisco Bay Area postponed a vote on Tuesday to raise its minimum wage to $12.30, which if passed would be among the highest municipal "living wage" rates in the United States. The proposal before the city council in Richmond, an industrial city of about 100,000 people east of San Francisco, comes as Democratic politicians across the United States are raising concerns about the growing gap between the poorest and richest Americans.

German cabinet signs off on minimum wage from 2015

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's cabinet gave the green light on Wednesday to a national minimum wage of 8.50 euros per hour in Europe's biggest economy - a flagship project for the Social Democrats (SPD) who share power with Angela Merkel's conservatives. The minimum wage is due to apply from 2015 but will not cover minors, trainees and some interns. Some employers can continue to pay their workers less until the end of 2016 if they are covered by certain collective agreements.

German cabinet signs off on minimum wage from 2015

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's cabinet agreed on Wednesday to a national minimum wage of 8.50 euros ($11.75) per hour - a flagship project for the Social Democrats (SPD) who share power with Angela Merkel's conservatives. The minimum wage will take effect in Europe's biggest economy from 2015 but will not cover minors, trainees and some interns. Some employers can continue to pay their workers less until the end of 2016 if they are covered by certain collective agreements.

German Cabinet approves national minimum wage starting next year

BERLIN - Chancellor Angela Merkel's Cabinet approved a national minimum wage for Germany on Wednesday, guaranteeing workers at least 8.50 euros per hour ($11.75) starting next year. German wages had for decades been left to trade unions and business groups to establish for regions or employment sectors. Merkel's conservative bloc had been in favour of preserving this tradition, but agreed to go ahead with a national minimum wage as a concession to the left-leaning Social Democrats in order to seal a deal on forming a government together.

Japan February wages steady, winter bonuses up for first time in five years

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese wage earners' total cash earnings were unchanged in February from a year earlier and, in a possible sign of thaw in sluggish growth in salaries, winter bonuses rose for the first time in five years, data showed on Tuesday. Overtime pay, a barometer of strength in corporate activity, rose 3.4 percent from a year ago in February, up for an 11th straight month although the increase was slower than January's 4.8 percent rise, the figures from the labor ministry showed.

Saskatchewan to raise minimum wage to $10.20 an hour; plans for regular indexing

REGINA - Minimum-wage earners in Saskatchewan will be pocketing more money this year. The provincial government says the minimum wage is going up to $10.20 an hour from $10 starting in October. Labour Relations Minister Don Morgan says increasing the minimum wage will give minimum-wage earners more disposable income and improve their standard of living. The government also says it will introduce regulations in the next few weeks to provide for regular indexing of the minimum wage each year.

Saskatchewan to raise minimum wage to $10.20 an hour; plans for regular indexing

REGINA - Minimum-wage earners in Saskatchewan will be pocketing more money this year. The provincial government says the minimum wage is going up to $10.20 an hour from $10 starting in October. Labour Relations Minister Don Morgan says increasing the minimum wage will give minimum-wage earners more disposable income and improve their standard of living. The government also says it will introduce regulations in the next few weeks to provide for regular indexing of the minimum wage each year.

Internal Finance Department study cites benefit, feasibility of CPP expansion

OTTAWA - Internal research by the federal Finance Department says there would be economic benefits from expanding the Canada Pension Plan — and suggests this country could afford an improved plan in a strong economy. The findings in the fall 2013 document are somewhat more balanced than the bleak message presented last December, when the Harper government seized on the study's job-loss conclusions to dismiss demands from the provinces to improve the CPP.

Internal Finance Department study cites benefit, feasibility of CPP expansion

OTTAWA - Internal research by the federal Finance Department says there would be economic benefits from expanding the Canada Pension Plan — and suggests this country could afford an improved plan in a strong economy. The findings in the fall 2013 document are somewhat more balanced than the bleak message presented last December, when the Harper government seized on the study's job-loss conclusions to dismiss demands from the provinces to improve the CPP.
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