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Alex Brandon / AP

Health insurance companies that want to sell Affordable Care Act plans in 2018 in states that rely on the federal HealthCare.gov marketplace have to file rate requests today. Some insurers have already signaled their intent to exit some markets, while others plan on expanding.

The biggest news so far: Anthem is pulling out of Indiana and Wisconsin — two states that will get a ton of political attention, given that they're the home states of Vice President Mike Pence and Paul Ryan. But the nightmare scenario — a total withdrawal from all of the states it serves — isn't happening.

Here's how the ACA markets are shaping up.

  • Anthem, the large, for-profit Blue Cross Blue Shield brand, is withdrawing almost all of its ACA plans in Indiana (where it is headquartered) and Wisconsin. But it still intends to sell plans in 11 other states.
  • Health Care Service Corp., another big Blues brand, filed rates in the five states it operates (Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas). But a spokesperson said "no final decisions have been made regarding products or participation."
  • Kaiser Permanente said it remains "very committed to the individual coverage market" and will offer coverage in every region where it currently operates (California, Colorado, D.C., Georgia, Hawaii, Maryland, Oregon, Virginia, Washington)
  • Molina Healthcare submitted initial filings in all nine states it currently operates (California, Florida, Michigan, New Mexico, Ohio, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin).
  • Centene, a Medicaid-based insurer that has had profitable ACA plans, is entering more markets.
  • Oscar Health Insurance is expanding and will offer plans in California, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Tennessee and Texas.
  • MDwise, a small not-for-profit carrier in Indiana, is pulling out of the state. Health Tradition, a plan owned by Mayo Clinic, is leaving Wisconsin.
  • Medica expects to be in Iowa's exchange.
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama, the only ACA insurer in the state, will offer individual and small-group plans in every county next year.
  • Aetna, Humana and UnitedHealth Group, three of the largest health insurers in the country, previously decided to stop selling ACA plans in all or nearly all of their markets.
  • Other states that operate their own insurance exchange, like Connecticut, have shown that returning insurers are requesting sizable premium hikes next year, mostly due to the uncertainty in Washington.

Caveats: These are preliminary filings. Insurers can still decide to leave by September, and there's no guarantee their requested rate increases will look anything like what the state approves. A lot right now depends on if the government terminates cost-sharing subsidies for low-income people or stops enforcing the individual mandate to buy coverage.

And a reminder: The ACA individual marketplaces represent just a sliver of all health coverage. Employer plans, Medicare and Medicaid cover the bulk of the population.

Go deeper

In photos: Protests outside fortified capitols draw only small groups

Armed members of the far-right extremist group the Boogaloo Bois near the Michigan Capitol Building in Lansing on Jan. 17. About 20 protesters showed up, AP notes. Photo: Seth Herald/AFP via Getty Images

Small groups of protesters gathered outside fortified statehouses across the U.S. over the weekend ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.

The big picture: Some protests attracted armed members of far-right extremist groups but there were no reports of clashes, as had been feared. The National Guard and law enforcement outnumbered demonstrators, as security was heightened around the U.S. to avoid a repeat of the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riots, per AP.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
7 hours ago - World

China's economy grows 6.5% in Q4 as country rebounds from coronavirus

A technician installs and checks service robots to be be used for food and medicine delivery in Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province, China, on Sunday. Photo: Hu Xuejun/VCG via Getty Images

China's economy grew at a 6.5% pace in the final quarter of 2020, the national statistics bureau announced Monday local time, topping off a year in which it grew in three of four quarters and by 2.3% in total.

Why it matters: No other major economy managed positive growth in 2020. Although the COVID-19 pandemic was first detected in China, the country got the virus under control and became one of the main positive drivers of the global economy even as the rest of the world was largely under lockdown.

8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump to issue at least 100 pardons and commutations before leaving office

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump plans to issue at least 100 pardons and commutations on his final full day in office Tuesday, sources familiar with the matter told Axios.

Why it matters: This is a continuation of the president's controversial December spree that saw full pardons granted to more than two dozen people — including former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort, longtime associate Roger Stone and Charles Kushner, the father of Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

  • The pardons set to be issued before Trump exits the White House will be a mix of criminal justice ones and pardons for people connected to the president, the sources said.
  • CNN first reported this news.

Go deeper: Convicts turn to D.C. fixers for Trump pardons