The One Risk Businesses Worry About Most
Business + Economy

The One Risk Businesses Worry About Most


The world is getting riskier.

Insurance giant Travelers surveyed more than 1,100 business owners and executives recently and found that 48 percent agreed with that assessment, while 14 percent thought hazards in the business environment were diminishing.

“American businesses, in all categories, feel that the world is getting riskier and that the risks they face are amplified, increasingly complex and more difficult to manage,” Travelers reports. At businesses with more than 1,000 employees, 54 percent of executives see rising perils in the marketplace. (Travelers, of course, in is the business of helping companies mitigate the losses from those threats.)

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What’s got businesses most worried? It’s not the economy. While economic uncertainty and the potential threats from weather disasters, cybercrime, and legal compliance all remain concerns, the one risk that tops all others is rising medical costs.

Two-thirds of the business decision-makers surveyed said they worry about rising medical costs, with 32 percent saying they worry a great deal about it. Six in ten executives called medical cost inflation is the risk that has increased most rapidly over the past 10 years — and 38 percent called it the risk their business was least prepared to face.

Those health care concerns also extend into other categories covered in the survey. The related issue of rising employee benefit costs ranked second on the list of most worrisome risks, with 62 percent seeing it as a threat to their business. And concerns about complying with Obamacare is reflected in the level of worry about legal liability and compliance. Close to 60 percent of those surveyed said they have specific concerns about the new health care reform law.

Read the full report from Travelers here.

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