In his economic address at the Washington Navy Yard on September 16, President Obama bragged that “Health care costs are growing at the slowest rate in 50 years,” and attributed that to his Affordable Care Act, “which has helped to keep down the rise in health care costs to their lowest level in 50 years,” he claimed. He reiterated that in his press conference on November 14. His chief economist Jason Furman echoed that line in arguing that Obamacare is slowing health inflation in the Wall Street Journal on January 7.
But Obamacare has just gone into effect this year, almost a decade after that slowdown in health costs first appeared, as shown in the chart below. By contrast, Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) were enacted into law in 2003, which is when the slowdown in health costs began.