President Trump will visit California on Saturday to meet with victims of the wildfires in the state as the death toll from the Camp Fire stands at 63. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator Brock Long visited with victims, first responders and California Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday.
A bill sponsored by five Democratic senators seeks to authorize a 50% annual government match on up to $1,000 invested in a 401(k), IRA, 403(b) or 457(b) government retirement savings plan. If enacted into law, the Encouraging Americans to Save Act would also make the match available to participants in state and local government retirement programs such as OregonSaves.
Despite a strong economy, Americans' confidence about retirement has declined, according to a survey from the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards and Heart + Mind Strategies. More than 60% of survey respondents said it is more difficult to retire on time now than it was five years ago.
Ford, which is testing autonomous vehicles in Miami, Detroit, Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C., says it is focusing on scalability and profitability and plans to invest $4 billion in autonomous vehicle technology through 2023. "We feel that what we're building is an autonomous vehicle mobility service and we think the future is going to continue to have more and more of these transportation methods," said Sherif Marakby, CEO of Ford Autonomous Vehicles.
Telematics and data capture help the insurance industry write more accurate policies and create a better experience for the customer, according to insurers. Telematics, especially, has increased insurer knowledge of driver behavior, making it possible to refine pricing better than criteria such as credit scores, says Adam Troyer, a broker at Aon Benfield.
A winter storm stretching from Alabama to New England on Thursday brought snow and strong winds, causing closed schools and hectic commutes, as well as nearly 190,000 power outages and thousands of canceled or delayed flights. The storm caused at least eight deaths.
Hurricane Michael is not likely to cause as large a building boom in Florida as Hurricane Andrew did in 1992 because Michael hit a less-populated area. The number of claims submitted related to Michael stood at 117,565 as of Thursday, far lower than the 997,565 reported following Hurricane Irma in 2017.
The National Flood Insurance Program should take several actions, including revising its rating methodologies, modernizing its mapping resources and supporting flood-readiness preparation to decrease its risk of insolvency, writes Liam Sigaud of the American Consumer Institute. "Aligning premiums with risk, improving mapping procedures and creating stronger incentives to make homes and businesses stronger and more resilient to floods would go a long way toward setting the NFIP [on] firm financial footing," writes Sigaud.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is considering a request by two health insurance coalitions to limit policy claims against two insolvent long-term-care insurers to 30 days after the date of liquidation. The American Council of Life Insurers has told state regulators approval of the request would undermine the integrity of life insurance policies and annuities.
Comparing long-term bonds to annuities is tantamount to comparing apples to oranges because the point of an annuity is insurance against longevity risk, something no bond can do, says Jeffrey Brown, director of the Retirement Research Center of the National Bureau of Economic Research. He adds that "having a base of annuitized income is the only real way to ensure a basic level of income that cannot be outlived."
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