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Obamacare Or Not, Job Satisfaction Is Dropping

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Politicians and pundits had a field day with the Congressional Budget Office's recent report on the Affordable Care Act and whether it would lead to Americans walking away from jobs now that they no longer had to worry about health care.

A potentially larger issue is why so many Americans hate their jobs, and what that means to the economy.

According to Chicago-based CareerBuilder, about one in five American workers (21%) say they plan to look for a new job this year, and far and away the most common reason cited is "job dissatisfaction."

CareerBuilder says that 59% of Americans are satisfied with their jobs, down from 66% last year. Salary issues and "not feeling valued" are the biggest reasons for Americans being downbeat about their jobs.

There might be a silver lining with so many workers sprucing up their resumes and looking for new gigs: It could open up those jobs to other people who need them.

"In general, however, when more workers change jobs it's usually a sign the labor market is warming up," says Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources for CareerBuilder. "During the recession and in its aftermath fewer people voluntarily left jobs because the chances of finding a new or better one were low compared to a healthier economic cycle."

Past any potential benefits to the job market, why do so many Americans want to change jobs?

CareerBuilder offers the following reasons:

  • 58% of workers want to leave because they are dissatisfied with their jobs.
  • 45% say their "upward mobility" is limited.
  • 39% want to leave their job because they dislike their "work-life balance."
  • 39% say they are "highly stressed" at their current job.
  • 37% want to leave because they hate their boss.
  • 36% want out because they were "overlooked" for a promotion.
  • 28% are unhappy they didn't get a pay raise in 2013.

Of course, that leaves 79% of Americans who don't want to leave their jobs.

The most common reasons cited for job satisfaction is collaboration -- 54% say they like the people they work with -- and 50% say they have "good benefits."

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