Los Angeles Times, May 27, 2010

Small businesses in California are being hit this year with double-digit hikes in health insurance costs that could hurt the state's economic recovery as companies curtail plans for hiring and expansion to pay their insurance bills. Five major insurers in California's small-business market are raising rates 12% to 23% for firms with fewer than 50 employees, according to a survey conducted by the Los Angeles Times. Similar increases are being felt by many small businesses across the nation, mainly the result of escalating costs for medical care and pharmaceuticals, insurers say.

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