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Goldman Sachs Report: Watered-Down Senate Health Bill a Windfall for Big Insurance

Should lawmakers further weaken the bill, the industry will stand to profit

The Huffington Post’s Sam Stein reports that Goldman Sachs (in the course of performing “God’s work“) did a report analyzing the impact of health reform on Cigna, Aetna, WellPoint, UnitedHealth and Humana. While Stein concludes that insurers would profit from undermining health care reform, the report also points out that a more “centrist” version of the Senate Finance Committee (SFC) legislation would lead to the highest “aggregate revenue growth” for the insurance industry:

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Should lawmakers further water-down the SFC bill, the industry will stand to profit, the report implies, suggesting that the “bull” case scenario is a reform package that brings in millions of new government-subsidized customers without requiring the industry to pay any new taxes. Industry revenue would grow 6.9% from “more moderation of provisions in the current SFC plan or as a result of changes prior to the major implementation in 2013,” the report states. The report therefore suggests that the insurance industry may actually prefer watered-down reform over nothing. The Wonk Room has more. (Chart courtesy of FDL)