News Headlines Article

Health Overhaul’s $264 Million Question Weighs Down WellPoint
San Francisco Chronicle

The failure by state regulators to decide how much insurers must spend on patient care is scaring investors from health-plan stocks and complicating company decisions on premiums, commissions and cost cutting.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ decision, expected in June, has slipped to October, and U.S. officials must weigh in after that, said Jane Cline, the association’s president. Whether to include taxes in the calculation, the most pivotal decision remaining, may cost health plans led by WellPoint Inc. $264 million next year, said Ana Gupte, a Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. analyst in New York.