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Some carriers opting out of MN insurance marketplace

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ST. PAUL — With just four months to go before Minnesota's new health insurance exchange goes live, it remains to be seen how many choices consumers will get.

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The names of companies that will offer competing plans via MNsure have not been announced.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press reports three health insurance companies say they've decided not to compete in portions of the new Minnesota marketplace, at least for policies that cover 2014. They include Minnetonka-based UnitedHealth Group.

But the Commerce Department predicts consumers will still benefit from significant competition on the exchange even if some carriers opt out. It says nine companies are seeking approval to sell in the individual and/or small employer marketplaces.

Individuals and small businesses can start shopping on MNsure in October for policies that take effect Jan. 1.

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