AP file photo

Maryland insurance regulators knocked down the rate increases insurers wanted to charge for Affordable Care Act coverage next year — but not by much. They wanted an average premium increase of 43%. What did they get? 33%.

Why it’s happening: The Maryland Insurance Administration said the rates for the two individual market insurers — CareFirst and Kaiser — aren’t rising because of the uncertainty over whether they’ll keep getting their cost-sharing reduction payments. Instead, the main reasons were the return of the ACA tax on health insurers, healthy customers leaving the market, the rising cost of medical claims, and more claims than expected.

Why it matters: Maryland is a state that has generally supported the ACA and tried to make it work. It’s also significant that they’re not blaming the Trump administration and Congress for their actions against the law.

Go deeper

Post-debate poll finds Biden strong on every major issue

Joe Biden speaks Friday about "The Biden Plan to Beat COVID-19," at The Queen theater in Wilmington, Del. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

This is one of the bigger signs of trouble for President Trump that we've seen in a poll: Of the final debate's seven topics, Joe Biden won or tied on all seven when viewers in a massive Axios-SurveyMonkey sample were asked who they trusted more to handle the issue.

Why it matters: In a time of unprecedented colliding crises for the nation, the polling considered Biden to be vastly more competent.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
4 hours ago - Science

The murder hornets are here

A braver man than me holds a speciment of the Asian giant hornet. Photo: Karen Ducey/Getty Images

Entomologists in Washington state on Thursday discovered the first Asian giant hornet nest in the U.S.

Why it matters: You may know this insect species by its nom de guerre: "the murder hornet." While the threat they pose to humans has been overstated, the invading hornets could decimate local honeybee populations if they establish themselves.

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