Health Insurers Befuddle Consumers

DALBAR, Inc. announced today the release of its first-ever national evaluation of health insurance communications, the Explanation of Benefits (EOBs). This evaluation compared the usefulness of the communication from 34 leading insurers, including the federal government own Medicare program.

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The evaluation found 68% of EOBs received failing grades. The Medicare communication was among the failures, scoring below the industry standard.

“This failure rate helps to explain why health care costs continue to rise with little resistance on the part of consumers — they just don’t know what they are buying,” said Kathleen Whalen, Managing Director at DALBAR. “An uninformed consumer is vulnerable to high prices, fraud and abuse,” she added. [Read the full article]

NASA needs to go somewhere specific, not just talk about it, skeptical U.S. senators told the space agency chief Wednesday.

President Barack Obama’s proposed budget kills the previous administration’s return-to-the-moon mission, sometimes nicknamed “Apollo on steroids.” That leaves the space agency adrift without a goal or destination, senators and outside experts said at a Senate Commerce science and space subcommittee hearing, the first since Obama unveiled his new space plan this month.

On top of that the nation’s space shuttle fleet is only months away from long-planned retirement, an issue for senators from Florida, where NASA is a major employer. And while the new NASA plan includes extra money — $6 billion over five years — for private spaceships and developing new rocket technology, NASA shouldn’t be just about spending, the senators said. It should be about John F. Kennedy-like vision.

“Resources without vision is a waste of time and money,” Sen. [Read the full article]

The First Annual Halter Financial Summit – “China in a Changing World” will host a gathering of the world top-level executives, government officials, financial professionals, economists, and investors to explore how the world financial climate has changed since the most recent global recession, the worst since the Great Depression, and specifically China future role in the global economy. The Summit will be held in Shanghai, China, April 7-9, 2010, at the Pudong Shangri-La Hotel.

Our keynote speaker, George W. Bush, Founder of the George W. Bush Foundation and 43rd President of the United States of America, will give his view of current world events; John Snow, Secretary of the Treasury (2003-2006), will give remarks on the world economy; former U.S. Ambassador to China Senator James Sasser will give his view of Sino-U.S. [Read the full article]

The Federal Reserve is examining the role that Wall Street firms including Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS – News) played in helping Greece arrange credit default swaps, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Thursday.

“We are looking into a number of questions related to Goldman Sachs and other companies in their derivatives arrangements with Greece,” Bernanke said in response to a question for Senate banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd.

Bernanke said the Securities and Exchange Commission was also “interested” in the issue and added: “Obviously, using these instruments in a way that potentially destabilizes a company or a country is counterproductive.”[Read the full article]

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