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Letter: Raising wages would boost economy

Customers sit at a McDonald's restaurant in Hong

Customers sit at a McDonald's restaurant in Hong Kong on July 25, 2014. McDonald's says a scandal over a meat supplier in China is hurting sales in the region and its global sales forecast for 2014 is "at risk." Credit: AP / Kin Cheung

Let's connect the dots. "Wage pressure" [News, Aug. 3] described fast-food workers advocating for $15-an-hour wages. Then, Standard & Poor's researchers said that the United States needs to look at the inequality of wealth and pay, because it is holding back the U.S. economy.

When the chief executive of McDonald's made $9.5 million last year, and many McDonald's workers earned minimum wage, or about $15,100 a year, that is pay inequality. The same is true in many giant corporations. What the economy needs is more spending. If each worker got $15 an hour -- a wage a person can live on -- he or she would spend it, and the U.S. economy would take off.

People earning millions don't spend, but save most of it. The economy doesn't move.

Let's give a living wage to all for their work.

Peter Barnett, Sayville

Editor's note: The writer is a board member of the Long Island Coalition for the Homeless.