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Survey: Health Rates Hit Wages Hardest

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Owners of successful small companies say rising health insurance costs could take a bite out of employees’ paychecks.

Researchers in the New York office of PricewaterhouseCoopers L.L.C. have published figures on that trend in a summary of results from an informal survey of 291 chief executives of small, rapidly growing privately held companies.

About 57% of the participating executives said rising health insurance costs have caused problems.

About 10% of the executives said health care costs will cause them to slow hiring, and another 10% said health care costs will encourage them to prefer part-time workers over full-time workers. But 34% said health care costs could lead to lower wage increases for current employees.