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BLS: Private-sector health insurance benefit costs up 4.4 percent

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The average cost for private-sector health insurance benefits in March was up 4.4 percent over last year, according to new figures released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That cost was $2.36 per hour, or 7.9 percent, of total compensation. Ten years ago, employer costs averaged $1.53, according to the BLS. Last March, the cost was $2.26 per hour.

Those current costs ranged from 85 cents per hour for service workers to $3.52 for management, professional and related occupations, according to the BLS.

Among specific occupational categories, employer costs ranged from $2.08 for sales and office occupations; about $2.80 for natural resources, construction and maintenance occupations; and $2.72 for production, transportation and material moving occupations.

The cost of health insurance benefits for union workers averaged $5.54 per hour compared to $2.04 for nonunion workers, according to the BLS. Last March, those costs were $5.23 per hour compared to $1.97.

Establishments with fewer than 100 workers averaged $1.65 per hour worked, while those with 100 to 499 employees averaged $2.61 and those with more than 500 averaged $4.

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Jason Scott

Jason Scott

Jason Scott covers state government, real estate and construction, media and marketing, and Dauphin County. Have a tip or question for him? Email him at Follow him on Twitter, @JScottJournal. Circle Jason Scott on .

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