White House: Restaurants haven't cut hours of workers due to ACA

July 31, 2013 at 1:51 AM
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WASHINGTON, July 31 (UPI) -- Scattered news reports say some restaurants are cutting employee hours or not hiring because of healthcare reform, but U.S. officials say it's not true.

"It turns out restaurants aren't limiting hours on average -- they're increasing them and restaurants are hiring at a faster pace than expected. All of which to say that the Affordable Care Act isn't restraining job growth for restaurants at all," a statement by the White House said.

A White House analysis of the relationship between the Affordable Care Act and job growth on Tumblr: -- http://whitehouse.tumblr.com/post/56825323234/your-daily-wonk-despite-claims-to-the-contrary -- said restaurants have had the fastest job growth of any industry in the retail and food services sector since the Affordable Care Act was signed into law.

In fact, U.S. restaurants had even faster job growth than what would have been predicted from their growth in sales. Furthermore, workers in the restaurant industry have seen their average weekly hours increase since the Affordable Care Act was signed, contrary to the notion that there has been a widespread shift to part-time hours, the White House said.

During the four years since the recession ended in June 2009, 87 percent of the increase in employment was due to a rise in the number of workers in full-time jobs.

Since the Affordable Care Act was signed in March 2010, more than 90 percent of the rise in employment was due to workers in full-time jobs.

The number of involuntary part-time workers declined roughly in line with previous recoveries, but it spiked up 322,000 in June. However, nearly 30 percent of the June increase was due to federal employees suggesting furloughs contributed to the pickup in part-time employment.

"These observations strongly suggest that the Affordable Care Act has not constrained growth in hiring or work hours," the White House said.

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