Four of the five major health insurance carriers are currently in discussions to trim their losses and merge.
In the interim, the Dept. of Justice has stepped in as referee and thrown a flag on the play. Presumably illegal procedure is the penalty.
Carefully considered my butt.
DC thinks they can control the behavior of individuals and business by regulation and intimidation. The DOJ believes they can preserve what little competition left in the health insurance market by blocking mergers.
It has not occurred to them that the reason why some carriers are willing to be bought (merged) is because they want OUT of the Obamacare market.
If the DOJ prohibits the merger they will simply withdraw from the market leaving only 3 major health insurance carriers in the 2017 game.
Which is precisely what the merger was intended to do. Remove weaker players from the game and leave the stronger ones in play.
The DOJ referees are doing nothing to preserve the market and increase competition. This move just continues to prove how incompetent they are and how little they understand about the health insurance game.