Obamacare exchanges opened yesterday as the government shut down. The fear that has infiltrated many Americans is increasing, but you don’t have to worry. You are an investor, and you can always find a way to gain, even in the most devastating situations.
Yesterday, the health care exchanges opened up, and a flood of people visited the website to start learning more about their options for the Affordable Care Act. Just as everyone was given the freedom to finally face the real horror of Obamacare, they were presented with long delays and error messages. That’s not a good sign, but not at all surprising.
It won’t be long before everyone starts to see how buggy the system is. And while this may aggravate you and many others, let’s try to think positively. Right now, there’s a huge opportunity for investors like you. If you can get over the bad parts of Obamacare, you may be able to see the pot of gold waiting for you.
Investing with the Obamacare Deadlines
There are a number of deadlines you should know about so you can time your investments just right, as outlined by CNBC. The first one is December 15, 2013. This is the date by which Americans must purchase their health insurance and pay their first premium to ensure full coverage by January 1, 2014. Purchasing after this will cause a delay in coverage.
On January 1, 2014, all Americans who signed up for health insurance on the exchanges will be covered. Anyone who hasn’t signed up for health coverage will face a penalty.
After March 31, 2014, anyone that has not purchased health insurance through the exchanges will need to prove they had an interfering life event before they can purchase one of the plans offered.
When December 7, 2014 rolls around, the exchanges will open up again for everyone to purchase their health insurance for 2015.
So how can you gain on these deadlines? Well, right now, people are scrambling to get the health insurance policies on the exchanges. That means you could end up profiting by looking into the health insurance providers offered.
Private health insurance will also benefit, as individuals can choose to purchase a policy from another provider. To diversify your portfolio, include some of the drug companies and hospitals that will begin to see profits as people come in with health coverage, which will end up pouring money into these entities.
Don’t give up on Obamacare after 2014 though. The next year will be an even bigger year for you. The penalty for not having health insurance is going to increase, so more people will seek coverage. The same goes for 2016, when the penalty increases again.
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How to Profit from Obamacare
Since the Affordable Care Act was passed in 2010, some health insurance stocks have climbed 100%. Investors anticipated that since everyone will need to have health insurance in 2014 or face a penalty, these companies would end up with many new customers. Some of the best performing health insurance companies, as CNNMoney reports, are United Health (NYSE: UNH), Cigna (NYSE: CI), and Aetna (NYSE: AET).
But don’t run to these health insurance companies just yet. The new state-based exchanges aren’t going to include these major insurers, so they won’t be seeing such an increase as they did before.
Instead, CNNMoney recommends you set your eyes on Medicaid insurance providers such as Molina (NYSE: MOH) and Centene (NYSE: CNC). These insurance providers are expanding their coverage to low income residents, so they will see an influx in new customers.
Hospitals are another investment option for you. When patients don’t have health insurance, the hospital ends up losing revenue. With everyone required to have health insurance now, there will be an increase in revenue. Already, Tenet Healthcare (NYSE: THC) has seen an increase since the passage of the ACA.
Don’t forget about drug companies, as they will likely see some increases too. Biosimilars are up and coming in the U.S. market – they're expected to be just as effective as the brand named ones, but often cheaper than the generics. The FDA has yet to approve any, but once it does, they could hit hard. Some of the big players getting involved in biosimilars include:
Pfizer (NYSE: PFE)
Merck (NYSE: MRK)
Novartis (NYSE: NVS)
Teva (NYSE: TEVA)
It’s easy to get stuck in the hoopla surrounding Obamacare, but don’t allow it to stop you from thinking of the benefits of this situation. There are many ways you can invest in this, and you might as well make some money on it.
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