U.S. companies expect an 11% rise in employee health costs in the next year, and as a result some may slow wage growth or hire fewer permanent workers, according to a survey.

The survey, released by consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, found that in the last year healthcare costs rose 12%, slowing profit growth at half of large U.S. companies. Executives were surveyed at 109 companies with at least 1,000 workers and at 38 companies with fewer than 1,000 workers.

More than three-quarters of executives surveyed said they might ask workers next year to share more cost. About 1 in 4 said they might slow the rate of wage increases, and 1 in 5 said they might stall hiring of permanent workers.

Let’s compare health costs to some other figures.

June 2005 CPI: 0%
June 2005 PPI: 0%
2004 wages after subtracting for inflation: -.31%

So, health costs are growing faster than inflation and wages.  Companies are thinking about asking workers to pay more of their health care costs – at a time when health care costs are already taking a larger percentage of a shrinking pay scale.   As a result if rising health care, companies might slow hiring.

Mr. President: THE SYSTEM IS FUCKING BROKEN.  IT DOES NOT FUCKING WORK ANYMORE.  YOUR SOLUTIONS DON’T FUCKING WORK.

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