It’s not just that employers are dropping their insurance, pushing their employees onto the troubled government exchanges and the individual health insurance market where premiums are skyrocketing (case in point, North Dakota’s 14.4 percent hike). The law is also having an impact on staffing decisions. And it’s not just conjecture at this point.
We can measure the impact.
“The ranks of $7.25-to-$10 hourly wage earners usually working 25- to 29-hour weeks in their primary job surged 17%, or 224,000, from the fourth quarter of 2012 to 2013,” reports Investor’s Business Daily. “Meanwhile, those very low-wage earners typically clocking 31- to 34-hour weeks in their main job fell 11%, or 84,000. Within this wage range, 35 hours-plus workers declined 7%, or 725,000.:
The trend lines are on the graph to the right. The data is from the US Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey.
President Obama has delayed implementation of vast swaths of the law, but as it stands right now employers will still face penalties in 2015 based on 2014 staffing levels.
But, if we follow the Obama administration’s “job lock” narrative, I guess we can all be happy that these part-time workers have been liberated from longer work weeks for bigger pay checks.