Increases in 2016 Marketplace Nongroup Premiums

The average premium increases from 2015 to 2016 for insurance plans offered in the Affordable Care Act marketplaces were highly variable from state to state and even within states.

The Issue 

The study looked at all 50 states and the District of Columbia and found that three in 10 Americans (29.1%) live in a region where the average premium for the lowest-cost silver plan declined from 2015 to 2016.

Key Findings

  • Twenty-six percent of people live in regions that saw premiums for the lowest-cost silver plan increase more than 15.0 percent.

  • Oklahoma saw the largest average increase in premiums for the lowest-cost silver plan at 41.8 percent.

  • Indiana experienced the largest average decrease in premiums for the lowest-cost silver plan at 12.1 percent.


The authors identify market characteristics associated with higher and lower premiums and premium growth, such as the number of insurers in the prior year, change in the number of insurers from one year to the next, types of insurers participating (e.g., Medicaid, provider-sponsored insurers) and prior year premium relative to the national average.

About the Urban Institute

The nonprofit Urban Institute is dedicated to elevating the debate on social and economic policy. For nearly five decades, Urban scholars have conducted research and offered evidence-based solutions that improve lives and strengthen communities across a rapidly urbanizing world. Their objective research helps expand opportunities for all, reduce hardship among the most vulnerable and strengthen the effectiveness of the public sector. Visit the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center for more information specific to its staff and its recent research.