Biggest Hike In Ontario’s Restaurant Prices In Over 25 Years. The Reason: Minimum Wage Hike.

As Bloomberg reports, restaurant prices in Ontario, Canada made the biggest jump in 27 years in January. Statistics Canada reported Friday that eateries’ prices climbed 1.9%; the last time they rose that high was in 1991, when then-Prime Minister Brian Mulroney implemented a federal goods and services tax forcing prices up 7.2%, still the largest gain recorded.

As Bloomberg notes of the January hike, “That coincides with legislative changes that saw the minimum wage increase more than 20 percent at the start of this year to C$14 ($11) an hour. Rising restaurant costs in January were part of a broader trend, with total inflation rising 0.9 percent in Ontario and 0.7 percent nationally.”

As the Retail Council of Canada notes, the minimum wage in Ontario is the highest in Canada, and will rise to $15 an hour on January 1, 2019.

The Canadian Constitution leaves enacting minimum wage laws to each of the ten provinces and the three territories that comprise Canada. In Ontario, students under the age of 18 working 28 hours or less per week while school is in session or work during a school break have a minimum wage of $13.15 per hour while liquor servers make $12.20.

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