Yet another reason not to believe anything that Fox News says.
Here’s what the Congressional Budget Office report says:
“CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor…” Page 117
“The estimated reduction stems almost entirely from a net decline in the amount of labor that workers choose to supply, rather than from a net drop in businesses’ demand for labor, so it will appear almost entirely as a reduction in labor force participation and in hours worked relative to what would have occurred otherwise rather than as an increase in unemployment (that is, more workers seeking but not finding jobs) or underemployment (such as part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours per week).” Page 117-118
“In CBO’s judgment, there is no compelling evidence that part-time employment has increased as a result of the ACA. On the one hand, there have been anecdotal reports of firms responding to the employer penalty by limiting workers’ hours, and the share of workers in parttime jobs has declined relatively slowly since the end of the recent recession. On the other hand, the share of workers in part-time jobs generally declines slowly after recessions, so whether that share would have declined more quickly during the past few years in the absence of the ACA is difficult to determine.” Page 125
“On balance, CBO estimates that the ACA will boost overall demand for goods and services over the next few years because the people who will benefit from the expansion of Medicaid and from access to the exchange subsidies are predominantly in lower-income households and thus are likely to spend a considerable fraction of their additional resources on goods and services…” Page 125
“The net increase in demand for goods and services will in turn boost demand for labor over the next few years, CBO estimates.” Page 125
And, as CBS News notes in this report:
The part of the CBO’s analysis that has drawn the most attention is the agency’s revised forecasts concerning the ACA’s impact on the labor market. Specifically one sentence: “The reduction in CBO’s projections of hours worked represents a decline in the number of full-time-equivalent workers of about 2.0 million in 2017, rising to about 2.5 million in 2024.”
Taken out of context, that sentence could be read to say the ACA will be responsible for a loss of 2.5 million jobs over the next decade. However, the report’s previous paragraph states, “The ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor — given the new taxes and other incentives they will face and the financial benefits some will receive.” So the phrase “a decline in the number of full-time-equivalent workers” is just a restatement of this in terms of how many full-time workers it is equal to.