New numbers on health insurance costs probably won't have employers tripping over themselves to make new hires: The average annual cost of a family premium paid by employers spiked 9% this year to $15,073, reports the New York Times. For single workers, the figure rose 8% to $5,429, notes the Wall Street Journal. Why the big hikes? At least part of the reason is likely because insurers are getting in hefty increases while they can before tougher new rules take effect next year under President Obama's overhaul.
The higher premiums paid by employers comes as more employees pay higher deductibles and co-pays. About 50% of workers at small companies have yearly deductibles of at least $1,000, up from 16% in 2006, notes the Washington Post. “Without any real national discussion or debate, there’s a quiet revolution going on in what we call health insurance in this country,” says the president of the Kaiser Family Foundation, which conducted the survey of employers. "Health insurance is becoming less and less comprehensive. … And we expect that trend to continue.”