Texas: Preliminary avg. 2021 #ACA premium changes: +7.4% individual, +3.9% sm. group

Back in July I posted a partial look at the preliminary 2021 ACA market landscape for Texas. I only had data for about 1/3 of the carriers at the time, so it was more of an overview than anything.

Now I have most of the data needed to analyze the individual market for 2021: Assuming no major changes in the approved rates, carriers are averaging around a 7.4% premium increase next year. This is actually unusually high for 2021 so far...other states are averaging less than 2% overall.

Most of the rate hike seems to be caused by Celtic/Ambetter ("Superior Health Plan"), which holds 1/3 of the entire market and is raising rates by nearly 12%. Blue Cross Blue Shield, which has another 36% market share, is only raising rates 3%, while the third and fourth largest carriers in the market, Molina and Oscar, are raising rates by 5.3% and 14.7% respectively.

There's also a couple of misleading numbers--both divisions of "Scott & White" are massively DROPPING their premiums for 2021, by 33% and 54%...but they have fewer than 2,000 people enrolled total to begin with; make of that what you will.

As I noted in July, there appear to be two new entrants to the TX ACA market as well: El Paso First (a division of Sendero, I think) and Friday Health Insurance.

As for the small group market, I couldn't find any actual enrollment data there, so I can only run an unweighted average rate hike, which comes in at 3.9%.