HMO Stocks Slump On CBO Health Care Reform Score
Reuters reports that HMO stocks slipped lower today, in the aftermath of the Congressional Budget Office's analysis of the Senate Finance Committee health care reform bill.
"Shares of WellPoint Inc fell more than 7 percent, while UnitedHealth Group Inc, Aetna Inc and Humana dropped more than 4.5 percent, bucking a positive overall market. ... The share moves continued the declines since mid-September for health insurance stocks, which have proved extremely sensitive to reform developments in Washington. 'We continue to think managed care stocks will remain in flux until the 'devils in the detail' are resolved in final legislation,' Goldman Sachs analyst Matthew Borsch said in a research note" (Krauskopf, 10/8).
The Wall Street Journal: "Managed-care stocks slumped in early trading as the market sees the adoption of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee health-overhaul bill increasingly likely. Deutsche Bank calls the bill 'quite onerous for managed care.' Wells Fargo views it favorably for hospitals as it would increase the percentage of insured patients. Aetna Inc. (AET, $25.63, -$1.43, -5.29%), WellPoint Inc. (WLP, $44.34, -$3.32, -6.97%) and United Health Group Inc. (UNH, $23.86, -$1.19, -4.75%) were among the decliners" (10/8).