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Wages are the payment, usually financial, that an employee receives from an employer in exchange for their labor. This compensation includes salaries, bonuses, tips, and commissions.

As of June 2024, the federal minimum wage for covered nonexempt employees is $7.25 per hour, according to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The federal minimum wage has been at this rate since July 24, 2009.

However, different states have their own minimum wage laws. As of 2024, the New York State minimum wage is $15.00 per hour, with variations in Long Island, NYC, and lower wages for tipped service workers. New York State’s minimum wage will increase by $0.50 per year on January 1, 2025 and January 1, 2026. Then, beginning in 2027, the minimum wage will increase annually by the three-year moving average of the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) for the Northeast Region. See: New York’s Minimum Wage Overview

Wages are typically calculated on an hourly, daily, or piecework basis and are paid on a regular schedule, such as weekly, biweekly, or monthly.

See also: U.S. Department of Labor - Wage and Hour Division -  Minimum Wage - State Minimum Wage Laws

[Last updated in July of 2024 by the Wex Definitions Team]