Health Savings Accounts And Health Reimbursement Arrangements: Assets, Account Balances, and Rollovers, 2006–2014

The Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) and Greenwald & Associates created the EBRI/Greenwald & Associates Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey (CEHCS) to examine issues surrounding consumer-directed health care, including the cost of insurance, the cost of care, satisfaction with health care, satisfaction with a health care plan, reasons for choosing a plan, and sources of health information. The survey was also designed to provide nationally representative data regarding the growth of CDHPs and high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) and the impact of these plans and consumer engagement more generally on the behavior and attitudes of adults with private health insurance coverage.

In a recently released Issue Brief, findings from the survey were presented. Some of the results from the survey include:

• In 2014, there was $22.1 billion in health savings accounts (HSAs) and health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), spread across 10.6 million accounts, according to data from the 2014 EBRI/Greenwald & Associates Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey (CEHCS). In 2008, there were only 4.2 million accounts with $5.7 billion in assets.
• The average account balance was $2,077 in 2014, up from $1,356 in 2008.

• An increasing number of individuals have held their account for three or more years. One-quarter (27 percent) had held their account for three to four years, up from 19 percent in 2008. Thirteen percent had held their account five or more years, up from 4 percent in 2008.

• Accounts with an employer contribution had a higher average balance than those without an employer contribution. Accounts with an employer contribution had an average balance of $2,403, whereas those without an employer contribution had an average balance of $2,056.

• Individuals who had held an HRA or HSA for five years or more had $3,092 in their account. Those who had held an account for less than a year had less than $1,500 in their account. In general, average account balances have grown over the longer term regardless of how long the account had been open.

• Average rollover amounts increased from $1,165 in 2013 to $1,244 in 2014.

• $8.9 billion was rolled over in 2014, down from $9.4 billion in 2013.

• Eleven percent of individuals had held an account for more than a year without a rollover in 2014.

• Rollover amounts increased with the length of time an individual had held an account. In 2014, those who had held an account one to two years rolled over an average of $982; those who had held an account three to four years rolled over an average of $1,421; and those who had held an account five or more years rolled over an average of $1,428.

• Accounts with an employer contribution had a higher amount rolled over than those without an employer contribution. Accounts with an employer contribution had an average rollover of $1,280, whereas those without an employer contribution had an average rollover of $1,069.

Source: EBRI Issue Brief #409, January 2015

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