<em>Patt Morrison</em> is known for its innovative discussions of local politics and culture, as well as its presentation of the effects of national and world news on Southern California.
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Blue Shield lowering premiums

The Anthem Blue Cross headquarters.
The Anthem Blue Cross headquarters.
David McNew/Getty Images

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Blue Shield of California has announced that it will reduce, your read that right, reduce premiums by 2.5% for many of its policyholders. The health insurance giant has been under the watchful eye of regulators and Congress for enacting a series of steep rate increases. The adjustment should be reflected in subscribers’ October bill and will amount to about $167 million in savings for its 2 million customers. And as if that wasn’t enough, the company says that it will cap its earnings to no more than 2 percent of annual revenue. Anything Blue Shield makes above and beyond the cap will be refunded to policy holders. The company plans to return $180 million for 2010. Why did Blue Shield decide to lower its premiums and give back money to its subscribers and how much?


Doug Heller, executive director, Consumer Watchdog