Unexpectedly Intriguing!
October 22, 2015

In our previous installment, we made the following claim:

On average, the amount by which the typical American's health insurance premiums went up in 2014 over the previous year was $639, with the largest percentage increases being paid by the households led by the youngest Americans - the ones who could afford it the least.

We were wrong. After we dug deeper into the demographics of age and income, we found that the youngest Americans are only the second-most harmed group that has been negatively impacted by the implementation of President Obama's Affordable Care Act. In reality, the Americans most materially harmed by Obamacare are the oldest.

Our table below works through the math that backs up that finding. If you're accessing this article through a site that republishes our RSS news feed, but which doesn't maintain our CSS formatting, you may want to click through to our site to view the table in the format in which we published it):

2014 Health Insurance Expenditures and Total Money Income by Age Group
Age Group Average Health Insurance Expenditure in 2014 Average Health Insurance Expenditure in 2013 Year Over Year Increase in Expenditure for Health Insurance Year Over Year Percentage Increase in Expenditure for Health Insurance Average Total Money Income in 2014 Increase in Health Insurance Expenditure as Percentage of Average Total Money Income
Age 24 and Under $766 $526 $240 45.6% $15,734 1.53%
Age 25-34 $1,910 $1,334 $576 43.2% $39,532 1.46%
Age 35-44 $2,683 $1,944 $739 38.0% $52,967 1.40%
Age 45-54 $2,936 $2,242 $694 31.0% $55,692 1.25%
Age 55-64 $3,218 $2,537 $681 26.8% $50,066 1.36%
Age 65-74 $3,985 $3,409 $576 16.9% $40,675 1.42%
Age 75 and Over $3,906 $3,265 $641 19.6% $29,726 2.16%
All Ages (Average) $2,868 $2,229 $639 28.7% $42,789 1.49%

Americans Age 75 and older were most negatively affected by the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in 2014, as the increase in their average annual expenditures for health insurance increased by an amount equal to 2.16% of their average annual total money income.

And so we find that Americans Age 75 and older, a demographic group that predominantly consists of elderly widows whose primary source of income is provided by Social Security's survivor's insurance benefits, are the Americans most harmed by the increases in health insurance costs driven by the implementation of Obamacare.

2014 Age Pyramid - Source: Theodora - http://www.theodora.com/wfbcurrent/united_states/united_states_people.html

Image Credit: Theodora.

Data Sources

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Consumer Expenditure Survey. Multiyear Tables. [PDF Documents: 2013-2014]. Reference URL: http://www.bls.gov/cex/csxmulti.htm. Accessed 18 October 2015.

U.S. Census Bureau. Current Population Survey. Annual Social and Economic (ASEC) Supplement. Table PINC-01. Selected Characteristics of People 15 Years and Over, by Total Money Income in 2014, Work Experience in 2014, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex. [Excel Spreadsheet]. 16 September 2015. Accessed 16 September 2015.

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