Breakout

The REAL Obamacare headaches begin January 1st: Doug Cote

Breakout

Since Healthcare.gov’s staggering debut in October, Obamacare has faced a level of attack not seen since its controversial debate and passage on Capitol Hill in 2010 --  and this is only the enrollment phase.

What lies ahead in 2014 when the actual delivery of health care begins remains to be seen, but for many observers the odds are it won’t be pretty, or what people expect.

“There are going to be a lot of after effects that I don’t think are appreciated,” says Doug Cote, US chief market strategist at ING Investment Management in the attached video. “I think there will be a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth.”

Related: The Real Reason Obamacare Is a Disaster

Specifically, Cote questions things like whether people who think they signed up, actually got signed up. He also believes there’s going to be a lot of people who are stunned to find out what the high deductible policy they elected really means. But most of all, with the number of cancelled existing policies rising by the day, Cote worries about how it will impact the economy, saying that it could potentially also be a jobs-killer for small business.

“Uncertainty for doctors. Uncertainty for hospitals. Uncertainty for individuals. Uncertainty for businesses.  That’s what we’re talking about,"  Cote says.

To be fair, the Cote says he doesn't plan to go overboard worrying about it and points to the looming midterm elections in November 2014 as a sort of counter-balance to any runaway disaster.  

Realted: Republicans Must Fix Obamacare, Not Destroy it: Ben Stein

At the same time, the Obama administration continues to amend, if not water down, its name-sake policy in a bid to shore up confidence and stave off criticism.  The most recent example came just last week, when the so-called individual mandate (that requires everyone to have insurance or face a fine from the IRS) was waived for anyone who had a policy cancelled or can show any of a dozen other approved reasons to qualify for an exemption.

“I think it’s actually going to drive costs up,” Cote says of the formally named Affordable Care Act, predicting that young healthy enrollment will be too low and insurance companies will end up saying "we got all the sick people."

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