Stephen Davis, University of Chicago, has four ideas on how to create jobs. Here is the summary, full article here:
1. Roll back costly benefit mandates for health insurance. The high cost of health insurance acts as a drag on job creation and wage growth. Benefit mandates set by the states prevent health insurance companies from offering inexpensive, no-frills plans. State-level mandates cover acupuncture, alcoholism treatments, chiropractors, fertility treatments, marriage counseling and much more–about 1,900 mandates across the 50 states. The effect is to limit choice among insurance plans, raise health insurance costs for employers and individuals and depress job creation. State governments should undo these harmful effects by repealing costly benefit mandates.
2. Suspend federal minimum wage mandates. The current unemployment rate among American teenagers is nearly 26%. Minimum wage mandates are among the factors that drive teen unemployment rates to such high levels. These mandates raise the cost of labor for employers who would otherwise hire unskilled and inexperienced workers. As a result, employers substitute away from these workers and rely instead on capital-intensive production methods, skilled workers and self-service by customers. In this way, minimum wage laws undercut job opportunities for the least skilled and the least experienced. The effects are especially pernicious for the young, who are robbed of opportunities to land a job, acquire valuable training and experience, and demonstrate their worth to employers.
3. Renounce the grossly misnamed Employee Free Choice Act. This legislation, currently before Congress, threatens to stack the deck against employers in the union certification process. Current law requires a secret ballot election among workers when the employer opposes union certification. If the union wins majority support, the National Labor Relations Board certifies the union as the exclusive workplace representative in collective bargaining with the employer.
4. Experiment with how best to put the unemployed back to work and assess the results. Government agencies and community organizations have tried many programs to help the unemployed return to work. Some programs focus on job search assistance and interviewing skills. Others provide counseling about education and training opportunities. Yet others rely on re-employment bonuses for job losers or financial inducements to hire the unemployed. There is much potential to learn from these programs about which approaches are cost effective, and which are not.