Did You Think Those New Jobs Were All Full-Time?

An op-ed piece in The Wall Street Journal this week points out that not all those new jobs created in June were full-time jobs.  Let’s look at the numbers.

There was a net increase of jobs in June of 288,000.  But, what’s behind that statistic?  Part-time jobs increased by about 800,000 and full-time jobs declined by about 523,000 jobs.  That means the economy is shedding full-time jobs, but adding part-time jobs instead.

Rather than applauding the new job growth number of 288,000 new jobs, we should be lamenting the fact that the economy is churning instead of growing robustly.  In fact, only 47.7% of adults in the U. S. are involved in full-time employment.  That’s pitifully low.  This is an incredibly anemic recovery.  It also represents a terrible waste and an enormous opportunity cost for the economy.  All those other part-time employees could be working and increasing our GDP.

What’s causing these dismal employment figures?  For one thing, ObamaCare.  Let’s face it.  Small businesses don’t want to cross the 30 hour per week limit for employees, triggering the Affordable Care Act’s mandate for health insurance coverage.  That’s a sizeable disincentive.  Also, current monetary, fiscal, and regulatory policies that favor big government at the same time create tough roadblocks to economic growth and prosperity.

Next time, you hear grandiose claims of an economic recovery, look at how many new jobs are part-time and how many are full-time.

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