Money Minute: Virginia Sees Big Rate Hikes for Obamacare

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A first look at how much health care premiums may go up in the second year of Obamacare.

Insurance companies in Virginia have filed rate proposals for 2015 that call for significant rate increases, but nothing near the dire predictions of Obamacare opponents. The Wall Street Journal reports the proposed increases easily top overall inflation, but that's been true of health care costs for years. One of the biggest plans, Wellpoint's (WLP) Anthem HealthKeepers, is asking for an average increase of 8.5 percent. Other plans call for rate hikes of 3.3 percent to nearly 15 percent.

But it may be a bit easier to pay for those increases. Economists polled by USA Today expect wage increases to be a bit higher than they've been in recent years. That's partly because the unemployment rate has dropped sharply to 6.3 percent.

Another important trend developing for next year has to with our TV viewing habits -- and the dramatic slide in the audience for music-based TV shows. The audience for "American Idol" and its imitators has declined to the point that many of those shows are in jeopardy of being canceled. Along with the slide in viewership, The New York Times reports the average age of the people watching has increased to above 50 for many shows, including "The Voice" -- and that's not the group that advertisers are going after.

Here on Wall Street last week, the Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) rose 0.4 percent, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) was little changed and the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) fell 1.3 percent.

The Dow begins the week at a record high, but the Nasdaq has lost 6.5 percent since topping out 10 weeks ago. Many of the new technology stocks that had been high-flyers are now viewed as over-priced -- in some cases, way over-priced. The software company Splunk (SPLK) is good example. It has lost more than half of its value over the past year. It's taken a round trip from below $50 a share to nearly $100, and all the way back down again.

Splunk and other are known as momentum stocks. They can move up very quickly when investors are jumping on board, but they can decline just as quickly.

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.


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112 Comments

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clwgeorgetownlaw

Those look like the same types of insurance premium increases we have seen for the last ten years but now it's the "fault of Obamacare". The answer is getting rid of the insurance companies. People need health care & not health insurance.

May 12 2014 at 4:59 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
clwgeorgetownlaw

Those look like the same types of premium increases we have seen for the last ten years but now its the "fault of Obamacare"

May 12 2014 at 4:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
crimeslawyer

This stupidity brought to you by the democrats. Vote GOP. Stop the decline of America.

May 12 2014 at 4:39 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to crimeslawyer's comment
clwgeorgetownlaw

GOP caused the decline of America

May 12 2014 at 4:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to clwgeorgetownlaw's comment
progressivehoax

Dunce, it was Pelosi, Reid, Frank, Dodd and Obumble that caused the demise of America. Next.

May 13 2014 at 8:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down
ENGLISH

If you are not paying the increase do to being subsidized, who cares. It comes to an average of $8.00 a month. If you are in a high priced family plan, working, and beings citizen...it will make a difference. We are back to square one for who is covered. In the Border States, people have taken to going to Mexico for treatment to avoid the large deducibles. Guess it is good for Mexico.

May 12 2014 at 4:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
unitedpaintings

Failurecare at work. LMAO

May 12 2014 at 4:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to unitedpaintings's comment
cliff

The problem is, it isn't failing. It's overwhelmingly succeeding. This writer was clearly biased against Obamacare because if you add to the article what the actual yearly premium rate hike had been which was 10% the last 5 to 10 years. Google it. And then add in what this article claims the average may be 8.5% this years premium hike will be LOWER by 1.5% than the past 5 years. Now how is that failing especially when you plug in the GOP predicted 15 to 20% rate hikes.

Seems to me with the facts added, Obamacare is an overwhelming success.

May 12 2014 at 4:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to cliff's comment
tru.liberal1

Wrong again

http://dailycaller.com/2014/04/07/survey-u-s-sees-sharpest-health-insurance-premium-increases-in-years/

Whoda thunk

May 12 2014 at 4:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
rmnlt

Unitedpaintings: You read the headline but not the article. The rates have been going up like this for years, way before ACA. This conservative rag gives a headline that appeals to you FOxXtes because it knows you are way to shallow to actually read the article.

May 12 2014 at 4:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to rmnlt's comment
chuckhalper

..where is the $2500 reduction that Obama promised us?

May 12 2014 at 4:52 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down
sam54ct

Chuck, it depends on which State you live, as to whether or not you'll see a reduction in premium costs. Here in Vermont, I can get BC/BS through the ACA for almost $200 per month less, then what I pay for BC/BS through work, a plan I've had since 1978.

May 13 2014 at 12:27 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down
bniel77644

The "startup pork" for this ACA was ridiculously obscene and thats ok????? Just you wait, this disaster is coming around to bite the majority of people real hard in their sit-downs, except those "friends of the press" that are exempt from it, lucky are they., but let's not talk about them.

May 12 2014 at 4:00 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to bniel77644's comment
cliff

All I ever hear from the GOP is the sky is falling and all the ACA does is surpass expectations and succeed at every turn.

8.5% Premium hike this year, the average the last 5 to 10 years? 10%. The Premiums are dropping this year.

You can protest all you want but the more the facts are revealed, the better the ACA Looks.

May 12 2014 at 4:08 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to cliff's comment
kitharris1

just remember, if you like your plan, you can keep your plan, period.

May 12 2014 at 3:46 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
bniel77644

Surprise, surprise, surprise!!!! Your drunk and so are all the others who think this is such wonderful healthcare. Do you remember ALL the promises the pres made before this rolled out, and how many of those were actually kept. You liberals are really stone deaf, ignorant and wouldn't recognize the truth even if it slapped you in the head. Most of you need your mother boards replaced!!

May 12 2014 at 3:43 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to bniel77644's comment
cliff

Calling us drunk doesn't change the facts.

1: The yearly average Premium hike was 10%. Look it up.
2: The yearly average predicted by this article is 8.5% You do the math. Wait I will because the GOP is incapable of such things. That means a DROP of 1.5% in average premium hikes this year.
3: The GOP predicted Premiums would raise from 15 to 20%.
4As long as Obamacare kept it under 10% this year, his ACA was going to be seen as a success. He wanted 7 to 8% because he wanted the knockout blow but 8.5% is adequate enough to keep the ACA growing in popularity and to make sure it stays permanent.

5: He kept actually a good many promises. Unfortunately the GOP House refused to work and said as much, so he couldn't deliver on some because of them.

May 12 2014 at 4:04 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to cliff's comment
bniel77644

Cliifie has a short memory for promises made by the pres, but what difference does it make at this point"? LIBS your so choice!

May 12 2014 at 4:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
Alan

Waaaay too soon to have any idea what rates next year will look like. Many of the newly insured are using their policies to attend to deferred care. Ti s will be mostly over by midyear. Calm down and wait for the experience to accumulate before crying about rate increases.

May 12 2014 at 3:43 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
pkatcher

seriously people a NON ISSUE the insurance companies in the past had rate increases as high as 25%....these inscreases being requested or nomimal and STILL offer MORE coverage then you had before.....ESPCIALLY those of you who were UNINSURABLE in the past, or WOMEN who paid on average 15% extra or students thrown off their parents program or preention cvoerages which NEVER existed...get FACTs not FOX or RUSH OR GLENN OR JOHN B etc...

May 12 2014 at 3:30 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply