If we reimagine these premiums as taxes, we’d realize that Americans pay some of the highest and least progressive labor taxes in the developed world.
Just how heavy is the burden placed on American workers by employer insurance premiums?
What this data shows is that lower-income workers, higher-income workers, single workers, and married workers with children all contribute around 40 percent of their pay toward taxes and health premiums.
And when those health care costs are taken into account, the less well off no longer pay less than high-earners, as they do in taxes alone.
For instance, according to this analysis, American families that earn around $43,000, half of the average wage, pay 37 percent of their wages to taxes and health care premiums.
In high-tax Finland, the same type of family pays 23 percent of their compensation in labor taxes, which includes taxes they pay to support universal health care.
In the United Kingdom and Canada, it is less than 0 percent after government benefits. »