- Most major U.S. hospital operators saw their stocks take double-digit dips Wednesday following the election of Donald Trump, who has promised to repeal the Affordable Care Act upon taking office.
- Hospital investors could be concerned rolling back health insurance coverage will result in more uncompensated care and bad debt for hospitals.
- While hospitals saw drops, however, insurers saw mixed results and pharmaceutical companies saw increases as concerns evaporated around price regulation that was part of rival Hillary Clinton's healthcare platform.
The uncertainty around the future of healthcare, brought by the election of a presidential candidate who has promised to repeal the ACA without a distinct plan for how to replace it, was reflected Wednesday in industry stocks.
Hospitals took the biggest hit. According to a rundown from Business Insider:
- Tenet Healthcare (THC) went down as much as 25%, closed at $15.20 per share;
- Community Health Systems (CYH) closed at $4.65 per share, down from $5.93 per share;
- HCA Holdings (HCA) closed at $72.16 per share, down from $80.88 per share;
- LifePoint Health (LPNT) closed at $52.80, down from the $61 per share mark; and
- Universal Health Services' (UHS) closed at $119.26 per share, down from around $128 per share.
Insurers saw a variety of impacts, sources reported, with many having recently blamed losses on their ACA marketplace participation and already having begun to distance themselves from it.
UnitedHealth Group was down slightly (closed at $141.87, down from $142.85) while Anthem initially dropped less than 1% and then went to a gain (closed at $128.75, up from around $126 per share). Aetna saw a bigger jump of (closed at $118.01, up from $112.80), Cigna jumped (closed $135.76, up from around $129 per share), and Humana increased (closed at $185.94, up from $179.03), perhaps thanks to its Medicare business being seen as separate from the issues of the ACA.
Meanwhile, managed care provider Centene saw its stock drop quite a bit (closed at $54.04 per share, down from around the $66 mark). Centene has focused on its Medicaid business as well as expanding its ACA business, both in peril under the promise of an ACA repeal which would presumably include rollbacks of Medicaid expansion.
Centene CEO Michael Neidorff was among those suggesting Wednesday the drops were the result of a "gross overreaction" to Trump's unexpected election and he was confident they would rebound.