THIS is why I haven't been too worried about the initial 2015 rate requests...
I know I said I wouldn't be posting during the Netroots Nation convention unless something significant happened. Well, thanks to the Kaiser Family Foundation, I've learned of a pretty important development. The state of Rhode Island just released their decision on the APPROVED insurance premium rates for Blue Cross Blue Shield in 2015. Check it out:
As you can see, BCBSRI asked for an average rate increase of 8.9%. The state insurance commissioner approved...4.5%.
Obviously this may not be typical of what will happen in other states or for other companies, but the point is made: the preliminary rate requests are just that: Preliminary. You can REQUEST anything; that doesn't mean you'll get it.
UPDATE: I've found the market share breakout for both companies (the third one is new to the exchange), and it looks like BCBSRI made up almost all of it (98%), so the weighted average looks to come in at around 4.3%.