Special Topics in Health Insurance and Retirement Plans

A substantial part of employees’ compensation comes in the form of non-wage benefits, such as health insurance and retirement plans. The goal of this course is to critically examine why firms offer particular benefits, how benefit design influences employees and firms, and how government policies and reform efforts affect firms.

Topics covered:

  • Why do firms offer benefits in the first place?
  • Why do health insurance costs grow so fast?
  • How insurance costs affect firms’ profitability and employees’ overall compensation?
  • Do new forms of health insurance reduce costs or raise profitability?
  • How will health insurance policy reform influence firms?
  • How is the pension landscape changing?
  • Does including company stock in a retirement portfolio hurt employees?
  • Can employees effectively manage their own defined contribution plans?

Who will benefit:
The course is designed for human resource professionals who already have a basic understanding of benefit programs, but would like to better understand the relationship between benefits, firm performance, and employees’ total compensation.

Darren Lubotsky, Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Department of Economics, School of Labor and Employment Relations, and Institute of Government and Public Affairs


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