Tale of Two Obamacares as Some States Bypass U.S. Site
Comment of the Day

October 24 2013

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Tale of Two Obamacares as Some States Bypass U.S. Site

This article by Shannon Pettypiece, Freeman Klopott & Margaret Newkirk for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section
The delays that have plagued the federal healthcare.gov website may be improving, according to Jodi Ray, a project director in the Tampa office of Covering Kids and Families , a nonprofit working to expand coverage. Florida residents must rely on the federal exchange.

Community groups helping to enroll the uninsured are seeing “much better results” on healthcare.gov over the past week, said Ray, who heads a group of 10 navigator organizations for Florida. Until this week, the navigators were forced to rely mostly on the government's call-in line and paper applications to sign up people. This week, they're using the website more often.

“They're definitely seeing improvement,” Ray said. “They have been able to get people all the way through to making a plan choice, if they want to go that far, or at least examining their options.”

Eoin Treacy's view Obamacare has been a bonanza for health insurance companies since hospitals have previously had to absorb the costs of uninsured people presenting at A&E which pushed up premiums. The advent of the Affordable Care Act ensures that not only do the companies have more customers, but the implied cost of covering costs for the uninsured should decline. In addition the introduction of the law has also offered an opportunity to increase premiums; protecting or increasing margins.

Having rallied persistently for much of the year some of the larger providers hit peaks just ahead of the October debut of Obamacare, with a number posting downside key reversals. (Also see Comment of the Day on September 19th) United Healthcare, Aetna, Cigna, Humana and Wellpoint have all at least partially completed reversions towards their respective means. Centene is in the process of forming a downside weekly key reversal.

Elsewhere in the health insurance sector, Aon Corp, which is managing the health insurance plans for a range of Fortune 500 companies, Torchmark, Primerica, Aflac, and Principal Financial Group have all become somewhat overextended relative to the respective 200-day MAs. The first clear downward dynamics are likely to suggest the onset of mean reversion.

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