For months the health insurance industry has been warning young adults that they’re about to get screwed by a coming rate hike under Obamacare. Right now, most states allow insurance companies to charge their oldest customers as much as five times more than their youngest customers, so a policy that costs $500 a month for a sixtysomething could be sold to a twentysomething for $100. Starting next year, insurers won’t be able to charge seniors more than triple what the twentysomethings have to pay.
Fears of sticker shock may be overblown, though, according to new data from HealthPocket, a website that helps consumers compare and shop for health plans. The company found that nationwide, the average premiums for older people and younger people are well within the 3 to 1 ratio required by the health-care law.