Part-time jobs rise to record high, ObamaCare blamed

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the latest jobs numbers on Friday showing that the economy added 195,000 in June. The White House, which has been plagued by lackluster economic numbers since coming into office in 2009, praised the report, claiming that the stimulus bill “helped bring the recession to an end and put us on the path to recovery.”

That’s wishful thinking. The stimulus bill — the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 — was an $831 billion bill that the Obama Administration said would keep unemployment under 8%. Well, they were wrong. Unemployment topped out at 10% in October 2009, eight months after the stimulus bill was signed into law. According the the June 2013 reports, unemployment is still high, at 7.6%, and there are signs that the job market is being hampered.

The effects of ObamaCare on employment have been well noted. Businesses had been looking for ways to avoid the employer mandate, which requires them to offer insurance coverage to any employee working 30+ hours a week, and had begun slashing hours. It appears, based on last month’s jobs report, that there has been a surge in part-time hiring, which some attribute to ObamaCare:

As a reminder: jobs have quantity and quality components. The quantity component was good enough to convince the 10 Year the taper is imminent (if not stocks, which continue to trade dislocated from any and all fundamentals). But how about the quality? In a word: not good. In June, the household survey reported that part-time jobs soared by 360,000 to 28,059,000 - an all time record high. Full time jobs? Down 240,000. And looking back at the entire year, so far in 2013, just 130K Full-Time Jobs have been added, offset by a whopping 557K Part-Time jobs. And there is your jobs “quality” leading to today’s market euphoria (if only for now).

Zero Hedge also looks at the numbers between full-time and part-time jobs over the last year. As you can see in the chart, there was a huge disparity in June.

The June jobs report cames just a few days after the Obama Administration decided to delay implementation of the employer mandate, pushing back the effective date from January 2014 to January 2015. Critics of ObamaCare have pointed out that it’s an admission that the law is unworkable and that the White House is scrambling to save Democrats in next year’s election.

It’s not conclusive that ObamaCare is solely to blame for the rise in part-time employment, as James Pethokoukis notes, but the timing of the delay in the employer mandate and the jobs report adds to the perception that the law is hurting job growth.


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