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Health insurance companies that participate in Medicare Advantage will retain billions of extra taxpayer dollars next year thanks to the Biden administration’s recent decision to delay some reforms to the program — UnitedHealth Group alone could pull in at least $900 million of added profit just next year, according to one analyst.

Wall Street was overjoyed, as investors raced to buy stocks of the largest Medicare Advantage insurers, including UnitedHealth, Humana, CVS Health, Elevance Health, and Centene. It was “a sigh of relief” for the industry, according to Jailendra Singh, a health care stock analyst at Truist Securities. Chris Meekins, a health policy analyst at Raymond James, called the White House’s move “a clearing event for the space.”


A slower, gradual process for the “most controversial policies … means that MA plans have time to adjust their coding and bidding behaviors as necessary,” Spencer Perlman, a health care policy analyst at the independent research firm Veda Partners, said in a note to investors.

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