Obamacare’s War on Women Reduces Employment by 4 Million Full-Time Equivalent Workers

effCasey Mulligan of the University of Chicago has just released a study examining Obamacare’s impact on employment:

  • The ACA’s employment taxes create strong incentives to work less. The health subsidies’ structure will put millions in a position in which working part time (29 hours or fewer, as defined by the ACA) will yield more disposable income than working their normal full-time schedule.
  • The reduction in weekly employment due to these ACA disincentives is estimated to be about 3 percent, or about 4 million fewer full-time-equivalent workers. This is the aggregate result of the law’s employment disincentives, and is nearly double the impact most recently estimated by the Congressional Budget Office.
  • Nearly half of American workers will be affected by at least one of the ACA’s employment taxes — and this does not account for the indirect effect on others as the labor market adjusts.
  • The ACA will push more women than men into part-time work. Because a greater percentage of women work just above 30 hours per week, it is women who will be more likely to drop to part-time work as defined by the ACA.

Mulligan has also written a damning op-ed explaining how Obamacare discriminates against women workers:

In the past four decades, millions of American women have entered the workforce, sought out new occupations, and embarked on professional careers. In fact, by 2013, just 18 percent of working women worked only part time. This marks a sharp reversal of conditions in 1975, when men did the vast majority of full-time work, while women were less likely to be employed at all and nearly a quarter worked 20-hours per week or less.

These gains in gender equality are threatened by two provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) ironically advertised as benefitting American workers. Taken together, these policies could drive the percentage of women working only part time back to what it was 40 years ago.

Comments (8)

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  1. The big ham says:

    What’s the problem 9 hour work weeks worked for George jetson.
    Lazy liberals


  2. The big ham says:

    Stop pushing buttons and go home. It is way past your 3 hour work day. 🙂

  3. Wanda J. Jones says:

    Hi, John–

    This is not a joke. And the liberals stand to get it in the you know what. None of those women will vote liberal again.

    I’ve got a book for you: “New Deal or Raw Deal?” By Burton Wl.l Folsom, Jr. 2001. It is about Roosevelt, and the quotes read as though it were Obama today. You will be amply rewarded if you pick this one up from Amazon.

    Next gazette coming tomorrow.

    Heard about John today. So sad. What is he going to do? Can you tell me now?


    Wanda J.

  4. Bob Hertz says:

    I am having some trouble tracking these conclusions. (not that they are wrong, but not all the math makes sense.)

    Say that today, a person works 40 hours a week at $15 an hour. That is $600 gross wages or $2400 a month before taxes.

    They get employer coverage, and their share of the premium is $250.

    So their net earnings are $2150 a month.

    Now they drop to 29 hours a week. Their gross wages from work fall from $2400 down to $1740 a month.

    The ACA is not free! If their family income is $40,000 a year, they have to pay about $300 a month for family health insurance after subsidies.

    So their net income is $1,340.

    They are NOT better off by going part time!

    Now there are a number of variables in my illustration, and perhaps Mulligan’s study was using very different variables.

    But as of right now I am not buying his study.

    • John R. Graham says:

      Thank you, but you have given just one example. He has done an econometric analysis using the entire distribution of wages and hours in the national economy, using the best data sources.

      Next week, we’ll post another illustration, using Walmart as an example.

  5. Jay Short says:

    As a health insurance broker I can tell you that I have a ton of clients who are working less to make sure they get a BIG subsidy. In addition , don’t forget that alot of employeers require employees to contributre monthly to premiums…Yes it is a tough calculation

    • John R. Graham says:

      Thank you for the inside information. Plus, after we get through the first year, people will tell their neighbors who might not have figured it out yet. It will take a while for this to percolate.