Obamacare Effect On Jobs: Part-Time Outgains Full-Time As Businesses Scale Back

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The unemployment rate in the United States for the month of June dallied at 7.6 percent, a number attended by the reported addition of 360,000 new part-time jobs — a record high. Such a big jump was hailed at the White House as a sign that the economy continues to benefit from the 2009 American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA).

What the numbers really show is that full-time, “quality” jobs are being supplanted on a massive scale as companies steady their workforce numbers ahead of the implementation of Obamacare. The labor force lost 240,000 full-time jobs in June, continuing a trend that has seen 557,000 part-time jobs in the United States outpace the comparatively paltry 130,000 new full-time positions since the first of the year.

Thank Obamacare, which mandates businesses employing more the 50 people to contribute toward health coverage for anyone who’s been hired to work more than 30 hours per week — or face paying per-employee penalties to the government (via the Internal Revenue Service).

Alan Kreuger, who chairs President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, spun the numbers to persuade the media the President was a visionary whose grand plan to get the economy back on track was destined to succeed.

“In the four years since the recession ended in June 2009, the economy has added 5.3 million jobs, thanks to the resilience of the American people and policies like the Recovery Act, which helped bring the recession to an end and put us on the path to recovery,” said Kreuger, who characterized the spectacular turnaround as “further confirmation that the U.S. economy is continuing to recover from the worst downturn since the Great Depression.”

Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • laura merrone

    We gave up on full time jobs. We both work part time jobs of 30 to 35 hours a week. We just started these and hope we can make ends meet on them…We’re just happy to have jobs. My husband could not find a job back in the US. However, we now live in Germany and he works at a base here. At least he found a job overseas… Shows how good the economy really is. These government statistics and programs remind me of the USSR’s “five year plans” they were always doing under Communism. Folks, the more socialist and communist we become, the lower our standard of living will be and the fewer jobs there will be in the private sector…So we need to get used to the “new normal” now.

  • Bernie

    Great plan….and it’s working. You also need to include a ‘trait’ that is being lost as well…..company loyalty. Part-time ‘workers’ just become worker-bees.

  • Al Chemist

    One thing the state run media did when the USSR was still the USSR was to say how great things were IN ANOTHER PART OF THE USSR. And, people who lived where things weren’t so great believed them (which, by the way, was most if not all, of the USSR. Our own government and state run media (the so-called MSM) is pushing the same crap off on the people in the US.

  • jdn

    Can’t wait to hear the logic behind how this is so great with praises to Obama and his vision . Then how giving way to the rising flood of illegals hoping for amnesty is perfect because they will do these part time jobs Americans don’t want . Yes it will be perfect with the minority of full time above poverty earners paying for health care of the majority and supplementing their income either partially or fully ta boot .

  • Robbie

    The Bush tax cuts to the ultra rich were supposed to create all kinds of jobs in America. That didn’t quite work out.

    • smilee

      It sure did not!!!!!!!!

    • vicki
      • Dave

        LOL… Yeah ok Vicki. Your hero Reagan, Clinton and their respective congresses (both parties) all participated in the deregulation of the banks, wall street, and the gamesmanship with the credit rating houses and the home builders, mortgage firms and Fannie/Freddie.

        Canada has stricter rules on credit, banking games etc and they have had ZERO meltdowns since the depression while we have had 6.

        Thats to your corp masters that pay the politicians to make the rules that benefit the few to the detriment of the country.

  • JRR

    It will be even worse if Obama gets his way, and companies are FORCED to hire criminals … as long as they are black. He’s working on finding a way to have the EEOC enforce this racist policy, and sadly, Congress will likely let him get away with it.

  • Chester

    For Bernie, company loyalty requires more than just the employee being loyal to the company. For that to happen, the company has to demonstrate some loyalty to the employee as well, and that just isn’t happening in today’s world. Very few companies care whether your newborn is sick and in the hospital or doing fine at home, just as long as you show up every day and put in your full eight hours plus a few minutes to prove your loyalty. IF you happen to get sick, or your kid be hospitalized a hundred miles from home, see how fast your job is cut, or at least you are cut.

    • smilee

      That is the employment world today, the solution is obvious because it worked well in the past. BRING BACK THE UNIONS TO PROVIDE THE BALANCE THAT REALLY WORKS!!!!!!!!!

      • Chester

        Smilee, I agree we NEED the unions, almost as badly now as when they were first formed, but we don’t have the same problems now. Underemployment doesn’t draw as much of a picture as being forced to work sixty to eighty hours a week for a pittance, then having to rent a company house and shop at the company store because the company doesn’t believe in cash payments. Unions were formed because people were dying on the job, usually due to workplace problems that could be fixed, with money and time the employer didn’t want to spend. The coal mines were one of the places where unions saved a lot of lives, but nearly any industry had their own bugaboos that killed workers.

        • rbrooks

          labor laws would be a more effective solution. (ask daveh why he wants to repeal child labor laws.)
          the best solution is to require american citizenship to be employed in this country.

        • smilee

          Different reasons for unions today but the need is just as great or greater to address today’s problems mostly wages and working conditions especially wages as they no longer sustain our families and we the taxpayers are picking up the differences in food stamps, earned income credits, care subsidies etc and the answer to those problems is higher wages which unions will accomplish as they have and still do were they exist, last I checked the labor dept website (about 2 years ago) union members were making about $800.00 per month more than nonunion workers on average. Unions without changes in welfare laws would cut government welfare costs dramatically. Do the math!!

      • Dave

        Yes, the Unions are the only counter balance against corp influence in Congress. Unions now need to be global in scope today.

        • vicki

          You could try voting for representatives that uphold their oath and thus the Constitution rather than pimping themselves out for money.

          • Dave

            Who are these people? Rand Paul that is in the pockets of the Coal Lobby? Ted Cruz who is in big time for Oil and Gas?

            I normally vote 3rd party.

          • vicki

            As do I. Libertarian party http://www.lp.org

          • smilee

            And what does voting for a bunch of losers do for you??????????

          • smilee

            THAT DOES NOT ANSWER HIM, WHY SUCH A SILLY RESPONSE????

          • vicki

            Why yelling?

      • vicki

        so you want me to trade one dictator 3000 miles away for 3000 petty dictators in a union hall? How about if the company doesn’t treat you right you go work for another company. Or start your own.

        • smilee

          Neither in reality are dictators. I guess you do not really know union people. If the other company is not unionized you are right back where you started for. It is better to organize and help them to mend their ways and pay what their employee’s actually earn for them. We today are dealing with most companies under paying their employees and at the same time have record profits and overpaid executives. During my 40 years with the company CEO executive pay went from a ratio of 7:1 to 160:1 (1963-2003). Do you see anything wrong there. And we had a union so many are greater.

          • vicki

            If I have to be in a union to have a job at a company then yes the union is acting as a dictator. If I have to go on strike when the union leaders tell me to then yes the union is acting as a dictator. If I have to accept a wage and benefit package because a majority of the members voted in favor of it then yes the union is acting as a dictator.

            What a company pays its executives is not my business nor is it yours (Unless you own the business). The concept of “overpaid” has no meaning as they, presumably without union interference, came to a mutual agreement on what the pay should be.

          • smilee

            You vote by secret vote conducted by the government to get a union it is not pushed on you by them but your fellow employees. You vote weather to go on strike or not by secret ballot, the union has nothing to say about your vote. Your wage package is on average $800.00 each month higher than non union so lets say you pay $100.00 for dues and at the end of month it returns $700.00. It is an investment and if you do not want to accept that go work elsewhere. I’ll ignore your last paragraph as it pure garbage.

          • vicki

            Smilee writes:

            You vote by secret vote conducted by the government to get a union it is not pushed on you by them but your fellow employees

            Thus the 3000 petty dictators in the union hall. Thank you for confirming my point.

          • smilee

            Another one of your inaccurate and idiotic conclusions

  • Chester

    One huge reason for all the part time work is the absolute fact that it saves a company money overall. It is cheaper to have a dozen people on call for two to five hours work whenever you need them than it is to have six people on full time, especially when the work load varies during the day. It is rough on the workers, because they have to be available every day, all day, with as little as five minutes notice, but that is their problem, not the employer’s. There are computer programs available to allow an employer to optimize how many people he is going to need, and when he is going to need them, so he can do a rough schedule, but he still needs several people on call, as the computer doesn’t always allow for unexpected changes in customer behavior.

  • jim b

    You know he lost his marbles with the ‘Lead from the behind’ slogan. Obizmo lacks both Character and Competence the two most important components, if not the only components, of leadership. It’s too bad so many Americans have become so stupid as to give of their liberties and freedoms for some table scraps, a shabby roof over their head, rags for clothing, and some generic medication in return for their uneducated vote. Black unemployment is up nearly 20 percent since Obizmo took over. Welcome to serfdom suckers!

  • 1baronrichsnot1

    They call it economic depression, it will get worse and worse, the dollar will fall to “not worth anything”, better known as inflation. Inflation on things not reported, like food, clothes, healthcare, gasoline, maintenance of all kinds(service), transportation, bus, subway, tolls, airlines, insurance, taxes, fares, but food will become the most costly, and will be the new money, barter for all things.. It’s going to get pretty bad! That’s the reason the DHS has delegated FEMA to line up 15,000 Russian EMER/Com.(formed 1994 by yeltsin) troops to standby in the fema 3 region (includes Wash.DC) to control and police this unmitigated disaster, they are also heavily schooled in Riot control, and marshall law and order.. Well supplied with ammo! So, as they tell you the economy is better because the banks are well supplied with money, you know that they invest those dollars in food, commodities of all kinds because the returns are better than lending to small business or individuals, driving prices higher and higher. We have lost 530,000 Jobs this year, created 130,000 part time positions (30 hrs or less), The latest employment numbers are ficticious, and the rest have quit looking?

  • JMichaelOHara

    Ben – do you have any documentation that shows this shift to part time is due to obamacare? (No? – I didn’t think so…)
    As several others have mentioned, the shift has been going on for years and is accelerating with the availability of software that allows the employer to adjust workers’ hours to meet demand – leaving workers holding the bag on their child-care arrangements and other personal schedules.

    • Dave

      JRR,
      The corporatists will find any excuse to reduce employee benefits or costs. But the good news is, the large firms have plenty of cash so the business owners and CEO’s can continue their double digit wealth grab. They need something to justify their greed.

  • JeffH

    Delaying the Employer Mandate Requires Delaying All of Obamacare.

    When a die-hard Obamacare supporter like Ezra Klein says the employer mandate should be repealed, clearly things are not going well.

    Klein says “This is a regulatory end-run of the legislative process. The law says the mandate goes into effect in 2014, but the administration has decided to give it until 2015 by simply refusing to enforce the penalties.”

    This matters because the Obama administration has abused nearly every power it possesses–and asserted powers it clearly does not possess–to protect Obamacare.

    The IRS’s unilateral decision to delay the employer mandate is the latest indication that we do not live under a Rule of Law, but under a Rule of Rulers who write and rewrite laws at whim, without legitimate authority, and otherwise compel behavior to suit their ends. Congress gave neither the IRS nor the president any authority to delay the imposition of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate. In the section of the law creating that mandate, Congress included several provisions indicating the mandate will take effect in 2014.

    Congress included several provisions indicating the mandate will take effect in 2014. In case those provisions were not clear enough, Section 4980H further clarifies:

    (d) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The amendments made by this section shall apply to months beginning after December 31, 2013.

    Second, the employer mandate is so intimately tied to the rest of the law that the IRS cannot delay it without delaying the rest of Obamacare.

    In addition to penalizing employers that fail to offer acceptable coverage, Obamacare offers tax credits and subsidies to certain workers who don’t receive an offer of acceptable coverage from an employer. The law requires employers to report information to the IRS on their coverage offerings, both to determine whether the employer will be subject to penalties and whether its employees will be eligible for credits and subsidies.

    The IRS both delayed the imposition of penalties and “suspend[ed] reporting for 2014.” As the American Enterprise Institute’s Tom Miller observes, without that information on employers’ health benefits offerings, the federal government simply cannot determine who will be eligible for credits and subsidies.
    – The Tenth Amendment Center

  • David169

    I am the CFO for a small international corporation. I say that so you will recognize that I am capable of addition and subtraction. Since out economy went down in 2009 I have kept records of the weekly layoffs and the monthly hiring; which is how the government spoons the statistics out to the people. When we lose 300,000 jobs each week and 150,000 people are hired in a month we are down a million plus jobs for the month. The statistic put out by the government that we have 100 million unemployed people of working age is an understatement of how bad this problem has become. We are way worse off than we were in the last depression. Everyday when I drive to work I see the ghost malls and the thousands of vacant industrial condos just in my area. Everywhere I go I see the homeless encampments. The administration is printing money on a scale not seen since Zimbabwe to lessen the impact on the unemployed and homeless but that is damaging the country further. When the US dollar becomes worthless the banks and commerce will cease to exist and our American way of life will cease to exist. This is the change that was promised by Obama. The day Obamacare goes into effect at least 10 million more people will lose their jobs so their employers can stay in business.

    • ChuckS123

      Could you share the totals since 2009?

    • Toomuchcoffeeguy

      Anyone can claim to be a CEO for an international corporation, but it would take a real CEO to know that demand is a hell of a lot more important than labor costs when it comes to labor decisions.

  • mark

    Obamacare has little to do with this trend. Corporate and personal capitalist greed and the exploitation of fellow Americans by so-called Christian businessmen has loads to do with it. There is never enough personal greed for the capitalist exploiters who run our economy and wages are never low enough for fellow Americans in their view. Lower the minimum wage is their battle cry and ship every job you can to China.

  • Miguel Martinez

    I work for The Home Depot, As a Part time employee when I started I would get 35 plus hours a week during the third of the year that is busy in my department. The rest of the year I would get about 20 hours. This year Home Depot changed it SOP for part time workers. it now mandate that no part time status workers be given more than 29 hours a week. At first I didn’t understand or really care. Three months went by, before my coworker told me the reason why. Obamacare, will require employing more the 50 people to contribute toward health coverage for anyone who’s been hired to work more than 30 hours per week — or face paying per-employee penalties to the government (via the Internal Revenue Service). For the past 9 checks I been workin 29 hours, when I could of been working 35 or 37 hours. Obama care is costing me revenue. Universal health care sounds wonderfully and you can’t oppose it without seeming like a hard right wing greed buster. But the truth is, nothing in life is free. In MILLIONS of Home Depot Employees that are part time are suffering. Thats 100s of Millions of dollar that never make it to stimulate the economy or improve those workers living condition. Now think about all the other companies and small businesses with 50 plus people that have cut back. Tell me Obamacare is “good” People with illness not having to worry about medical expense sounds wonderful, but at what expense? I hate to say it, but I don’t want to have to suffer so that very few may have a better lifestyle. It sounds jack up but this country is not a communist nation. People in America don’t live have as good as they do if it wasn’t cus america is capitalism. Sure there’s greed in the elites and CEOs but boy have even the common man benefit from capitalism. No to Obamacare, it’s not a free country if I can’t choose to go without health insurance or face paying a fine to the IRS