Pethokoukis, Economics, U.S. Economy

Is Obamacare causing a boom in part-time jobs? Probably not

Credit: MKM Partners

Credit: MKM Partners

MKM Partners economist Michael Darda on the part-time jobs issue:

Yet, there is very little evidence that anything unusual is going on with part-time employment which has been falling in a seesaw pattern since the recession ended.

There has been a lot of misinformation on this issue, largely due to 1) the political spat over the ACA and 2) the tendency for the part-time labor share to rise in the first few months of the year only to fall back again.

Although the part-time labor share remains historically high, it has been falling in a jagged fashion since the trough of the recession with the entirety of the previous surge occurring during the Great Recession.

There does not appear to be any shift in the trend since 2010 when the ACA became law. In fact, the ratio has been coming down faster than it did after the last two recessions.

Indeed, as Mark Perry has noted, if you take out one outlier month, the 2013 growth in part-time employment falls from 59% to 19% of jobs added. Moreover, over the past 12 months, part-timers have only made up 13% of job gains, which is less than usual.


4 thoughts on “Is Obamacare causing a boom in part-time jobs? Probably not

  1. Obamascare isn’t causing a boom in any jobs, full stop.

    Jim, this is an asinine posting – in order to detect the true damage being done by Obamascare, you need look no further than job creation since it was passed. It sucks. This isn’t pure substitution effect.

    The overall unemployment rate has remained at abnormal levels since 2010, and will continue to hover around 7% (actual reading: 14%, U-6) as long as it remains in place.

    I can instantly lower the unemployment rate by at least 100 bps – kill Obamascare.

  2. Gallup shows a 3.5% decrease in the percentage of us working full time now vs a year ago (their “payroll to population employment rate” decreased to 43.5% from 45.1%); in fact, “there has been essentially no growth in full-time employment for an employer since at least 2010, the first year Gallup polled on this measure.”

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