Chris Morran

afagen

CVS Reportedly Looking To Buy Aetna Insurance For $66 Billion

Earlier this year, health insurance giant Aetna was left broken-hearted when its $37 billion merger with Humana fell through because federal antitrust regulators apparently hate to see two mammoth insurers so in love with each other. But in this autumn season, there’s a rare bloom of corporate romance peeking out, as Aetna has reportedly found itself a suitor in the form of CVS Health. [More]

Joe Gratz

Judge Won’t Block Trump’s Plan To Halt Billions In Cost-Sharing Payments To Health Insurers

The federal judge overseeing a lawsuit filed by more than a dozen states to stop President Trump’s plan to cut off billions of dollars in payments to health insurance providers has decided to not issue a preliminary injunction preventing the White House from halting the subsidies. [More]

Senate Votes To Make Sure You Can’t Sue Your Bank Or Credit Card Companies

Senate Votes To Make Sure You Can’t Sue Your Bank Or Credit Card Companies

Lawmakers who regularly claim to love the Constitution and espouse their trust of the American consumer have done both a disservice, passing a resolution that makes sure that bank and credit card customers can be blocked from exercising their constitutional rights to a day in court. [More]

AT&T Says There Are Nearly 800,000 DirecTV Now Streaming Subscribers

AT&T Says There Are Nearly 800,000 DirecTV Now Streaming Subscribers

For years, the growing number of video streaming services available to TV viewers has eaten away at the subscriber base for pay-TV services. Traditional cable providers have avoided disaster thus far because even if customers cancel their TV package they still need to purchase their internet access from somebody (and many of us don’t have a choice about where to buy it). But satellite providers like DirecTV and Dish face the looming threat of cord-cutting without anything to offer cord-cutters other than ugly roof decor. [More]

Treasury Dept. Says You Shouldn’t Have The Right To Sue Your Bank Or Credit Card Company

Treasury Dept. Says You Shouldn’t Have The Right To Sue Your Bank Or Credit Card Company

Forget the Sixth Amendment, which guarantees the “right to a speedy and public trial” in criminal matters. And who needs that ancient Seventh Amendment and its fancy “right of trial by jury.” The U.S. Treasury Department has concluded that American consumers can not be trusted to thoughtfully exercise these Constitutional rights — at least not when doing so might be an annoyance to the financial services sector. [More]

238 Places Are Officially Trying To Become Home To Amazon’s Second Headquarters

238 Places Are Officially Trying To Become Home To Amazon’s Second Headquarters

Even though offering massive tax cuts and other benefits to attract corporate headquarters doesn’t always work out, that hasn’t stopped a lot of cities and regions from officially filing requests with Amazon to be considered for the company’s planned second headquarters. If you’re anywhere near any sort of population center, there’s a good chance your city council has put its name into the Amazon HQ hat. [More]

California Accuses Retailer Of Using Bait-And-Switch Tactics To Lure In Customers

California Accuses Retailer Of Using Bait-And-Switch Tactics To Lure In Customers

A Los Angeles-area chain of retail stores is accused by the state of repeatedly misleading customers into thinking they were going to get a good price on merchandise only to be told after they get into the store that the only way to get that advertised price is if they spend more money. [More]

Starwood Hotels

Artist Sues Hotel, Claiming His Paintings Became Infested With Bedbugs, Were Used In Porn Shoots

Hotel guests are notorious for treating their temporary living quarters with utter disregard; the phrase “trashing a hotel room” has been part of cultural parlance since at least the dawn of the rock star. Even the poshest of resorts often fall victim to their guests’ worst proclivities. In spite of all the obvious risk involved, one artist thought it would be a good idea to not only have his artwork displayed throughout a luxury hotel, but to install that artwork in the form of headboards. Now he’s suing the hotel after finding out that guests have apparently been treating his art like any other piece of hotel furniture — which, obviously, includes being in the background of porn videos. [More]

Mike Silva

Senators Propose Bipartisan Compromise To Restore Insurance Subsidies

President Trump recently announced that he was pulling the plug on $7 billion a year in federal cost-sharing subsidies to insurance companies selling individual policies to lower-income Americans, but today a pair of influential senators announced a bipartisan compromise that, if approved, would restore those payments for two years, while also giving states more flexibility with rules under the current law. [More]

FCC Chair Confirms He Can’t & Won’t Take Away Broadcast Licenses Because President Doesn’t Like A News Story

FCC Chair Confirms He Can’t & Won’t Take Away Broadcast Licenses Because President Doesn’t Like A News Story

FCC Chair, and self-proclaimed supporter of the First Amendment, Ajit Pai has been noticeably silent in the wake of President Trump’s recent suggestion that the FCC look into revoking the broadcast licenses of NBC and others that air news stories that are unfavorable to the White House. Pai is finally speaking up, and confirming what we already knew: That the FCC doesn’t have the legal authority to take NBC off the air over a news story. [More]

Brad Clinesmith

Most Philadelphia Stores Claim Double-Digit Sales Declines Due To Soda Tax

With the Chicago-area soda tax falling apart after only a few months, could the same soon happen to a similar sweetened beverage tax in Philadelphia? A new survey from the city’s Controller claims that the majority of retail businesses in the city have been harmed by the tax. [More]

The.Comedian

Supreme Court Will Decide If American Express Can Stop Stores From Encouraging Customers To Use Less-Expensive Cards

If you have multiple credit cards in your wallet, you probably decide which one to use based on factors like each card’s interest rate, current balance, and rewards programs. Merchants want to make that choice easier by offering discounts or other incentives for using cards that cost the retailer less to process, but American Express forbids its merchants from offering such deals, but it will soon be up to the Supreme Court to decide whether or not that’s legal. [More]

The Best Bits From John Oliver’s Takedown Of The Equifax Scandal

The Best Bits From John Oliver’s Takedown Of The Equifax Scandal

Equifax, the credit bureau that ignored warnings and failed to update its software, leading to a data breach that exposed private information for half the U.S. adult population, stepped into the crosshairs of Last Week Tonight’s John Oliver on Sunday, adding a bit of levity to this otherwise dire ongoing scandal. [More]

States Sue Trump Administration For Halting $7 Billion In Cost-Sharing Payments To Insurers

States Sue Trump Administration For Halting $7 Billion In Cost-Sharing Payments To Insurers

With a one-paragraph statement released late in the evening on Thursday, President Trump announced he was pulling the plug on $7 billion a year in payments from the federal government to insurance companies who sell individual policies through the exchanges set up by the Affordable Care Act. Today, at least five states say they are suing to keep these subsidies in place. [More]

Equifacks.com

IRS Has Second Thoughts About Giving $7.2M Fraud-Prevention Contract To Equifax

What does it take for the Internal Revenue Service to realize that maybe, just maybe, it picked the wrong company to award a $7.25 million fraud-prevention contract? It wasn’t enough that Equifax’s network was so poorly prepared for a hack that a months-long cyber attack compromised the sensitive information of more than 140 million Americans. And then that same company may have served up malware to consumers visiting its publicly available website. Whatever the reason, the IRS has finally begun to realize Equifax might just be absolutely terrible at its job. [More]

Trump Cuts Off Billions Of Dollars In Cost-Sharing Payments To Insurers, Putting Obamacare Marketplaces At Risk

Trump Cuts Off Billions Of Dollars In Cost-Sharing Payments To Insurers, Putting Obamacare Marketplaces At Risk

Only hours after signing an executive order that undermines several key aspects of the current health care law, President Trump has made good on his repeated threat to pull the plug on billions of dollars in subsidies provided by the federal government to insurers in the individual plan market. [More]

Wikimedia/Coolcaesar

Possible Sprint, T-Mobile Merger Could Face DOJ Antitrust Opposition

Though the romance rumor mill is still claiming that Sprint and T-Mobile are hoping to announce their engagement in the weeks to come, and it’s highly unlikely that the pro-industry FCC will do anything to slow these crazy kids from merging, the wireless wedding could be spoiled by the anti-trust wet blankets at the Justice Department. [More]

Kroger May Sell Off Its Convenience Store Chains, Including Kwik Shop, Tom Thumb, Turkey Hill

Kroger May Sell Off Its Convenience Store Chains, Including Kwik Shop, Tom Thumb, Turkey Hill

Most people know Kroger as a large, national chain of supermarkets. What they may not know is that Kroger also operates nearly 800 convenience stores under a variety of regional brands, including Kwik Shop, Tom Thumb, Turkey Hill, Quick Stop, and Loaf ‘N Jug. However, those could all soon be up for sale. [More]