Kitchen Table Economics

New Labor Regulations Threaten U.S. Economy

Few government policies threaten job creation like labor regulations.

According to a new report from the Center of Manufacturing Research, the federal government’s recent onslaught of labor regulations—such as the joint employer mandate and overtime rule—will cost the U.S. economy $81.6 million in compliance alone. The report also found that the new rules and mandates will cost more than 155,000 jobs over the next decade.

Since 2009, the Department of Labor (DOL) has established an average of three major labor regulations every year, inundating job creators with extra paperwork. Red tape will require U.S. employers to spend an additional 411 million working hours filling out compliance documents and adhering to new standards—time not spent opening new locations or hiring more employees.

This is especially harmful to small businesses, which operate with tighter budgets and can ill afford to spend fewer hours growing their business. It’s part of the reason why 60 percent of small business owners cite overregulation as a major hurdle.

Time is money. And labor regulations cost both.