The wildfires in California last month will be the largest wildfire loss in US history, although Fitch Ratings is unlikely to downgrade any US
reinsurance companies based on just wildfire losses. Fitch notes that the wildfires and three major hurricanes have made 2017 one of the US's biggest catastrophe loss years ever. Insured losses could fall between $70 billion and $100 billion.
Five lawsuits have been filed with the Los Angeles Superior Court by victims of the Las Vegas shooting and by their families, including one case that covers 450 victims and witnesses. The suit names shooter Stephen Paddock's estate; MGM Resorts International and Mandalay Corp., the operator and the owner of the hotel where the deadly attack was carried out; and event organizer Live Nation.
Drivers are reporting that some Chrysler Pacifica minivans' suddenly stop working while being driven. The Center for Auto Safety has petitioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to investigate the complaints.
Insurers serving the legal marijuana industry face complications due to differences in state and federal laws, which lead to varying ways of handling claims and cases in courts. Some insurers are opening specialist lines to provide coverage within the marijuana industry, while others see the industry as risky and best avoided.
The Pacific Northwest is vulnerable to earthquakes and tsunamis along the Cascadia Subduction Zone, and the compact sediments along that fault line could increase the risk, researchers at the University of Texas in Austin say. The coasts of Washington and Oregon are particularly vulnerable to the zone's potential to produce large tremors.
The National Weather Service has warned of potential river flooding in Seattle and much of western Washington as mountain regions brace themselves for up to 5 inches of rainfall and the melting of some of already high snow levels. If not for unseasonably high temperatures, the storm front would typically add mountain snow at this time of year.
Businesses that have employees use their own devices or corporate mobile devices have an average of 54 mobile malware attempts each year, according to a Check Point report. Every business studied was exposed to mobile malware, and 94% of security professionals expect the number of attacks to increase.
Private benefit exchanges are evolving to meet the market demands of employers and employees, according to a report from the Society for Human Resource Management. In addition to giving employees more flexibility to customize benefits, the exchanges lessen the administrative burden on HR departments, the report says.
The CMS announced Friday that Medicare Part B premiums and deductibles for 2018 will be the same as last year, but monthly premiums for Medicare Part A will rise by $9 to $422, while the deductible for hospitalization will increase by $24 to $1,340. The standard monthly Part B premium for seniors earning $85,000 or below will remain at $134 with a $183 deductible, but some beneficiaries have been paying less because of several years of little or no Social Security cost-of-living raise, so those seniors will pay more as Social Security checks rise.
A report from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics showed that 28.8 million Americans had no health insurance in the first half of 2017, statistically unchanged from 28.6 million in the same period a year before, but 19.8 million lower than in 2010. The percentage of people under the age of 65 who enrolled in high-deductible plans rose to 42.9% this year from 39.4% a year before, according to the report.
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