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Anemic Job Growth this Year is Mostly Part-Time and Low-Wage

While the Executive and Legislative branches may fight to claim credit for consistent job growth, a closer examination shows the growth is anemic. The economy might be in a post-recession recovery but we are not out of the woodwork since many would work longer and for better pay.

According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, this ongoing trend has continued into July.

Low-paying employments, including retail, restaurants, temporary staffing firms and home health care, accounted for 60% of job growth last month even though they comprise only 22% of national employment. Jobs are actually declining dramatically for applicants with a four-year degree by 256,000 jobs in July alone. During that time, part-time jobs sprang up by 174,000.

One might be led to believe that these numbers constitute a normal ration. But consider that in the entire U.S. economy there are 28 million part-time jobs while there are 116 million fulltime jobs. The disparity is quite striking.

The most likely impetus behind the trend is the Obama administration’s healthcare law. Under the law, employers are required to provide healthcare to their employees under certain parameters. If a company employs a certain amount of fulltime workers, they are obliged to provide all workers healthcare. To get around this requirement, many companies are simply hiring more part-time workers to make up the difference.

It is also possible that increasing numbers of women entering the workforce, work part-time to accommodate children.

Whatever the explanation, the job growth politicians point to so proudly is a Potemkin statistic.

Sources: USA Today, Sun Sentinel


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