Obamacare

Cuts in Worker Hours Drive Obamacare Delays

Nothing kills jobs like making employment more expensive

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The official reason for the one-year delay in ObamaCare's employer penalties is to smooth the transition for companies struggling with the law's complexity and reporting requirements.

But other problems likely moved the administration to act: The cost to modest-wage workers in lost hours has grown each week as employers, especially local governments, have cut part-time schedules. And the job cuts spelled political trouble for Democrats in midterm elections.

The delay will buy time but won't solve these problems or unwind the toll already taken.

An IBD search of employer announcements revealed workweek cuts for 16,500 workers as ObamaCare penalties drew closer. That number barely scratches the surface of the law's real impact because it excludes the vast majority of cases in which employers have announced cuts without putting a number on the workers facing reduced hours.