Illustrating Obamacare’s Effect on Employers’ Health Costs

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has published a chart showing how health-benefit costs among private employers have increased over the past decade. The chart shows health benefits increased from 6.9 percent of total compensation in September 2006 to 7.6 percent last September. The 0.7 percentage point absolute increase is a relative increase of ten percent.

The chart shades the period of the Great Recession (December 2007 through June 2009), after which health benefits as a share of total compensation really jump. This increase is counter-intuitive, because health benefits are stickier than wages, so they would normally have shrunk as a share

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