I noticed that the PBM stocks took off like a rocket at the end of the trading day yesterday. The news was that a tentative deal Medicare has been reached by the committee negotiating a compromise Medicare bill. PBMs are likely to add millions of members under the version of the bill that may be passed. However, of course this slight optimism is tempered by the fact that neither the hard-core Democrats like Ted Kennedy nor the fiscally-conservative Republicans are likely to sign on to this compromised version of the bill, because it either will lead to the death of Medicare as we know it, or the bankrupting of the Federal government–depending on your point of view.
In any event, I’m not sure that adding a large number of members via a government-funded program which may make them low-margin contractors is the best solution for fast future growth for PBM bottom lines.