More Federal Reserve Banks Find that Obamacare Holds Back Hiring

Aug 22, 2014 - 12:00pm

Senior Editor, Digital Content


The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg.

More surveys by regional Federal Reserve banks show how Obamacare’s mandates and regulations have made it harder for employers to hire workers, especially full-time ones.

The Wall Street Journal editorial board offers its thoughts [subscription required]. First, on the Philadelphia branch's survey:

The bank reports that 78.8% of businesses in the district have made no change to the number of workers they employ as the specific result of ObamaCare and 3% are hiring more. More troubling, 18.2% are cutting jobs and employees. Some 18% shifted the composition of their workforce to a higher proportion of part-time labor.

Then on an Atlanta branch poll which found:

[T]hat 34% of businesses planned to hire more part-time workers than in the past, mostly because of a rise in the relative costs of their full-time colleagues. ObamaCare may be contributing to that surge to the extent the law's insurance mandates and taxes increase spending on fringe benefits for people who work more than 30 hours.

On Tuesday, I wrote about two New York branch surveys:

Employers were also asked what effects Obamacare is having on their labor forces. Over 21% of manufacturers and nearly 17% of service firms say they reduced the number of employees because of the law, while only about 2% of each have hired more workers. What’s more, nearly 20% of both manufacturers and service firms say that Obamacare has pushed them to increase their proportion of part-time workers, but just under 5% of each type of firm said they have lowered them. Presumably this is due to the perverse incentives from Obamacare’s employer mandate.

These surveys indicate that the health care law puts too many burdens on employers and is holding back job growth.  

Follow Sean Hackbarth on Twitter at @seanhackbarth and the U.S. Chamber at @uschamber.

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About the Author

About the Author

Sean Hackbarth
Senior Editor, Digital Content

Sean writes about public policies affecting businesses including energy, health care, and regulations. When not battling those making it harder for free enterprise to succeed, he raves about all things Wisconsin (his home state) and religiously follows the Green Bay Packers.