Do Premiums Increase after Health Insurance Mergers? – A Reassessment of Guardado Et Al.'s Findings

13 Pages Posted: 16 Mar 2017

See all articles by Robert Bourke

Robert Bourke

Compass Lexecon

Mark A. Israel

Compass Lexecon

Ben Wagner

Compass Lexecon

David A. Weiskopf

Compass Lexecon; Johns Hopkins University

Date Written: January 15, 2017

Abstract

Guardado, Emmons, and Kane (2013) found that premiums in Nevada increased by 13.7 percent following the merger of United Healthcare and Sierra Health Services in 2008. Using methods similar to those used by Guardado et al., we study a series of more recent mergers to see if their results generalize, particularly given recent changes in the health insurance industry. We find that the results of their analysis do not generalize, with no pattern of higher premiums following recent mergers and, in fact, lower premiums following the mergers with the highest combined shares, a result consistent with lower medical costs or other efficiencies.

Keywords: Antitrust, Merger Retrospective

Suggested Citation

Bourke, Robert and Israel, Mark A. and Wagner, Ben and Weiskopf, David A., Do Premiums Increase after Health Insurance Mergers? – A Reassessment of Guardado Et Al.'s Findings (January 15, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2933062 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2933062

Robert Bourke (Contact Author)

Compass Lexecon ( email )

United States

Mark A. Israel

Compass Lexecon ( email )

United States

Ben Wagner

Compass Lexecon ( email )

United States

David A. Weiskopf

Compass Lexecon ( email )

1101 K St, NW 8th Fl
Washington, DC 20005
United States
202-589-3410 (Phone)

Johns Hopkins University ( email )

Baltimore, MD 20036-1984
United States

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