Magazine article HRMagazine

Benefits Briefs

Magazine article HRMagazine

Benefits Briefs

Article excerpt

For full versions of these articles and others, visit www.shrm.org/hrdisciplines/benefits.

Health Care Costs Rise, But Not as Fast as in 2012

A survey report released in March found that organizations expect health care costs to rise in 2013, but at a much lower rate than in 2012. The report, from Towers Watson and the National Business Group on Health, tallied responses from 583 large companies, with 8.5 million employees enrolled in their health care programs. Among the findings:

* Average total costs for active employees are expected to reach $12,136 in 2013, up 5.1 percent from $11,457 last year-the lowest cost increase in 15 years.

* Workers contribute 42 percent more for health care than they did five years ago, while organizations are paying 32 percent more.

* Employees' share of total health care expenses, including premiums and out-of-pocket costs, has climbed from 34 percent in 2011 to 37 percent in 2013.

Improving U.S. Economy Reduces 401(k) 'Leakage'

Fewer U.S. employees took hardship distributions and loans from their 401(k) plans in 2012 compared with 2008, a signal of economic improvement, according to a study by WorldatWork and the American Benefits Institute. …

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