Jun 20, 2017

Insurers are still getting critical ACA payments — for now

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

The Trump administration paid out the latest round of cost-sharing subsidies under the Affordable Care Act, despite its public ambivalence about whether to make those payments, industry officials told the Wall Street Journal.

The ACA's cost-sharing subsidies have become a major flashpoint in the political battle over the health care law. The administration hasn't publicly committed to keeping the money flowing — but it went ahead and made the payments for June, according to the Journal.

But insurers don't just want the money. They want some predictability — to know they'll keep receiving these subsidy payments in July, and throughout the upcoming plan year, etc. If they're afraid this line of income might vanish (which they are), the natural response is to seek bigger premium increases just to be safe. And so far, President Trump has shown no interest in any longer-term commitments.

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Syria's darkest chapter

Family room without a family, in Idlib. Photo: Muhammed Said/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The worst humanitarian crisis of Syria’s brutal civil war is colliding today with what could be the war’s most dangerous geopolitical showdown, after at least 29 Turkish troops were killed in an airstrike.

The big picture: The fighting is taking place in Idlib in northwest Syria, where a ferocious Syrian and Russian offensive has displaced 1 million civilians and infuriated Turkey, which borders the region.

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Fear of coronavirus pandemic escalates

Photo: Abdulgani Basheer/AFP/Getty Images

In the blink of an eye, we've entered a new phase on the coronavirus.

The big picture: Italy, Iran and South Korea are at "decisive" points in their responses, the World Health Organization said on Thursday.

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