Hawaii’s silver plans more expensive than gold

Hawaii is one of twelve states on healthcare.gov where the average monthly premium for a silver plan is higher than the average monthly premium for a gold plan, without taking subsides into account.

Due to President Trump’s consistent threats to stop cost-sharing reduction payments (CSRs), which he ultimately did, insurers raised premium rates for silver plans by an average of 34 percent across the country. The average cost of premiums has also risen for the other metal bands, but at lower rates: 18 percent for bronze, 16 percent for gold, and 24 percent for platinum.

The average cost for a silver plan in Hawaii increased by 38 percent, but the average cost for the second lowest costing silver plan only increased by 32 percent. On average, bronze plans increased by 24 percent, gold by 13 percent, and platinum by 10 percent.

Since insurers raised the rates of silver plans to compensate for the loss of CSRs, silver plans are more expensive than gold plans in Hawaii.

We compared plans on healthcare.gov for a 40-year-old non-smoking male buying a plan just for himself before subsides were added in Honolulu County.

Consumers who qualify for the Advanced Premium Tax Credit (APTC) will see an increase in their federal subsidy for premium costs, which is tied to the cost of the second lowest silver plan, making gold plans even less expensive for qualifying consumers.

For our hypothetical 40-year-old non-smoking male buying a plan just for himself with an annual income of $24,000 a year, here were the average monthly premium costs:

Surprisingly, this means that for some parts of the country, Trump’s decision to end CSRs made health insurance more affordable to some low income individual market beneficiaries, even if his Administration has helped to destabilize the market.