Health Insurers’ Third Quarter Earnings Up?

Health Insurers’ Third Quarter Earnings Up?

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Health Insurers’ Third Quarter Earnings Up?

How are health insurance companies experiencing higher earnings this quarter while so many industries are struggling?  Health care services were way down in the 3rd quarter for 2010, helping health insurance companies report earnings which were better than expected by experts.  The article on The Washington Post by Tom Murphy from November 3rd states health insurers have raised their 2010 profit forecasts because of this drop in health care.

Consumers haven’t stopped seeing the doctor, but rather less claims are being filed when compared to last year.  It’s important to realize though that care was unusually high last year because of an intense flu season and many utilizing subsidized health insurance.  Some insurance companies have reported that claims left over from earlier quarters came in lower than planned.

The nation’s current recession and its affect on consumer spending is a major factor behind the drop in health care according to BMO Capital analyst Dave Shove, who covers insurance companies.  Long periods of unemployment has had a major affect on spending but health care is usually the last to be cut by consumers.  Unfortunately, many are to the point of cutting back on the care of their health to save a dollar.  People have been struggling for a long time now and it’s taking its toll.

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