Apr 20, 2017

Anthem willing to stay in two Obamacare exchanges

Andrew Harnik / AP

Health insurer Anthem has filed preliminary Obamacare rates in Kentucky and Virginia, the Wall Street Journal reports. That indicates Anthem is willing to stay in some marketplaces even though there's still no guarantee Congress will fund the $7 billion in cost-sharing subsidies. Aetna and Cigna also are staying in Virginia, but UnitedHealthcare is leaving.

Why this matters: UnitedHealthcare's exit is relatively meaningless. The company bailed on nearly all of the Obamacare markets already. But Anthem's decision to stay, at least initially, is important since it is one of the largest publicly traded insurers in the Obamacare exchanges. If Anthem and other companies stay, the marketplaces won't collapse, although rates could go up and hurt those who don't get subsidies.

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Coronavirus kills 2 Diamond Princess passengers and South Korea sees first death

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. U.S. numbers include Americans extracted from Princess Cruise ship.

Two elderly Diamond Princess passengers have been killed by the novel coronavirus — the first deaths confirmed among the more than 600 infected aboard the cruise ship. South Korea also announced its first death Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed more than 2,200 people and infected over 75,465 others, mostly in mainland China, where the National Health Commission announced 118 new deaths since Thursday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 11 mins ago - Health

SoftBank to cut its stake to get T-Mobile's Sprint deal done

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

T-Mobile and Sprint announced a revised merger agreement that will see SoftBank getting a smaller share of the combined company, while most shareholders will receive the previously agreed upon exchange rate. The companies said they hope to get the deal as early as April 1.

Why it matters: The amended deal reflects the decline in Sprint's business, while leaving most shareholders' stake intact and removing another hurdle to the deal's closure.