Tags: Casselman | Obamacare | part-time | workers

FiveThirtyEight's Casselman: Obamacare Robs the Hours of Part-Time Workers

By    |   Thursday, 15 January 2015 10:29 AM

There is definitive proof that some companies are cutting hours for their most vulnerable workers in response to Obamacare, according to Ben Casselman, chief economics writer at data-crunching site FiveThirtyEight.

Casselman looked at the Current Population Survey, the same monthly report used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to calculate monthly changes in U.S. employment.

The data showed him the share of part-timers working just under 30 hours per week — which happens to be the cutoff point above which companies must provide healthcare benefits to their employees — has been rising for the past two years, while the share working just over 30 hours has been declining.

"Are Republicans right that employers are capping workers' hours to avoid offering health insurance? The evidence suggests the answer is 'yes,' although the number of workers affected is fairly small," he wrote.

In 2009, prior to Obamacare becoming law, 9.7 percent of part-timers worked between 25 hours and 29 hours and 7.7 percent worked between 31 and 34. In 2013, those numbers were 11.1 percent and 6.6 percent, respectively, Casselman reported.

In addition, he noted average weekly hours are rising in the economy as a whole, but are falling for workers in many of the sectors most likely to be affected by Obamacare's employer mandate — industries with ample low-pay, part-time workers who historically haven't been offered health insurance

"Obamacare hasn't led to a shift from full-time employment to part-time. But the evidence suggests it has led some employers to limit the hours of workers who were already part-time, effectively giving a pay cut to some of the most vulnerable Americans," he explained.

"Taken together, the evidence suggests that the health law has likely led a few hundred thousand workers to see their hours cut or capped. That's small in the context of an economy with 150 million workers. But it isn't a minor issue for those workers," Casselman said.

Philip Klein, commentary editor of the Washington Examiner and author of the book Overcoming Obamacare: Three Approaches to Reversing the Government Takeover of Health Care, noted that few Americans know what Republicans would do to fix the nation's healthcare system. In a Bloomberg View column, Klein said Republicans have reached a broad consensus that they want to give consumers greater control over healthcare spending, but that the devil is in the details of how to accomplish that.

King v. Burwell, the lawsuit challenging the the subsidies being distributed through Obamacare's federal insurance exchange, is expected to prompt a ruling from the Supreme Court by late June as to whether millions of Americans in three dozen states are benefiting from illegal health insurance subsidies. The fate of Obamacare could be affected by that ruling, he declared.

"If the justices invalidate those subsidies, Republicans must have a free-market alternative waiting in the wings. Otherwise, there will be tremendous pressure on Congress to pass a 'fix' allowing existing benefits to continue. Obamacare will be entrenched before Republicans even get a chance to retake the White House," Klein predicted.

© 2019 Newsmax Finance. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Finance
There is definitive proof that some companies are cutting hours for their most vulnerable workers in response to Obamacare, according to Ben Casselman, chief economics writer at data-crunching site FiveThirtyEight.
Casselman, Obamacare, part-time, workers
502
2015-29-15
Thursday, 15 January 2015 10:29 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
MONEYNEWS.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved