2018 MIDTERM ELECTION

Time: D H M S

Oklahoma: Oy Gevalt. Approved *unsubsidized* 2017 Indy Mkt Rate Hike: 76%.

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma, which had originally asked for an already-ugly 51% average rate hike, had bumped that up to a jaw-dropping 76% ask. Well, earlier this week, they got it:

Obamacare premiums will raise a staggering 76 percent on average for Oklahoma residents, and the state's top insurance regulator says the state's insurance exchange set up by the law is on "life support."

Oklahoma's Insurance Department said on Tuesday that increases in individual marketplace plans will range from 58 percent to 96 percent.

"These jaw-dropping increases make it clear that Oklahoma's exchange is on life support," said Insurance Commissioner John Doak, in a statement. "Health insurers are losing massive amounts of money. If they don't raise rates they'll go out of business. This system has been doomed from the beginning."

Oklahoma is one of five states to only have one Obamacare insurer in 2017, joining South Carolina, Alaska, Alabama and Wyoming. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma will be the only insurer for state residents.

Oh, and in an interesting "feedback loop" situation, note the last paragraph of the article:

An independent estimate from the web site acasignups.net found that 25 states are expected to have average rate hikes of 25 percent. However, that estimate includes off-exchange policies whenever possible, but only if they are compliant with Obamacare, the website said.

Huh. I'm gonna have to be careful or one of these days I'm gonna end up citing myself as a third-party data source...