Our View: Real impediment to job growth
Posted: October 9, 2012
As we pointed out in this space Monday, increased part-time hiring — standard this time of year, as businesses gear up for the holiday season — may just be the mask disguising a typically weak jobs report in this Age of Obama.
The economy added a scant 114,000 new jobs in September, but the number of involuntary part-time workers jumped from 8 million to nearly 8.6 million. What does this tell us? The official unemployment rate may have fallen rather dramatically, but the number of Americans still struggling to get by in this stagnant economy remains about the same. Meaning, a lot.
But, as Iain Murray, vice president for strategy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, observes, the jobs report — dismaying, in all truth — is merely half the story. The true impediment to genuine and prolonged job growth is the regulatory cost of doing business. To wit:
“Employers still face a dizzying array of regulations to comply with before they can hire someone new,” Mr. Murray says. “Estimates put the cost of red tape per employee at over $10,000 for small businesses. That's a massive deterrent to hiring new workers.”
In the presidential debate last Wednesday, Republican nominee Mitt Romney admitted the need for some government regulation. We suggest the figure cited by Mr. Murray — $10,000 per new worker — is not what he had in mind.