Marketplace Insurance Premiums in Early Approval States

A woman receives help completing an application form.

Research from the Urban Institute provides the most comprehensive look to date at insurance marketplace premium costs for 2015 versus 2014, with premium rates for every state that has finalized marketplace premium costs for 2015—including 17 states and District of Columbia.


The Issue:

Researchers examine silver tier premium costs from multiple rating areas (i.e., geographic regions within states where different plans are offered) to illustrate how premium costs will change from 2014 to 2015. Other key findings from the report show that larger premium increases are more likely to occur in rural areas than in large cities.

Key Findings

  • Premium increases will be quite low between 2014 and 2015.

  • In the rating areas we examine in the 17 states plus the District of Columbia, 10 states will have average premium reductions across the carriers’ lowest cost silver plans, seven will have small premium increases (defined as 5% or less), and one will have an increase greater than 5 percent.

  • Across the 39 rating regions studied within those states, 25 will have average premium reductions across their carriers’ lowest cost silver plans, nine will have small increases, and five will have larger increases (greater than 5%).


The authors find that, in most states, consumers will be able to buy a plan at a lower cost than in 2014, or at a slight increase (less than 5%). As insurers vie for the lowest premium costs, however, the authors note that consumers may have to switch insurance companies to get the best deal.

About the Grantee

The Urban Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy research and educational organization that examines the social, economic and governance problems facing the nation. For more information, visit