Morning Money Memo…
Obamacare may lower the cost of car insurance. A new study from the respected RAND Corporation says the price of several different types of coverage, including business liability, workers’ compensation and auto insurance may be reduced.
That’s because those policies often pay for treating injured people who don’t have medical coverage.
The Affordable Care Act has increased the share of people covered by private health insurance and Medicaid. The changes “can generate potential cost changes as high as 5 percent or more in particular states and insurance lines,” says the RAND report.
As coverage grows, insurers won’t have to put as much money aside to pay for accidents involving uninsured accident victims.
Young, Male Drivers, Big Bills
Pity 20-year-old, male drivers. They pay far more for car insurance than other motorists.
“Younger drivers are really paying much higher rates,” says senior analyst Laura Adams of insurancequotes.com. The website compared auto insurance prices.
“A 25-year-old single man is paying half as when he was 20. So that rate is dropping significantly,” says Adams.
The insurance industry says middle-age drivers have the lowest accident rates.
“A single, 50-year-old man is paying about 60 percent less than a single, 20-year-old man,” says Adams.
Single drivers pay more than married motorists.
Bank of America Settlement
Federal regulators say millions of credit card customers were misled by Bank of America. The bank is paying $772 million in fines and refunds to settle the claims brought by The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.
People who purchased extra credit-card protection products were misled by the bank’s marketing, say regulators. They found that telemarketers made sales pitches for two credit-protection products that were misleading about their costs and benefits.
Bank of America neither admitted nor denied the allegations.
A new alarm is being sounded about the risk of failure for many public pension funds. The well-known hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, says public pensions are likely to achieve 4 percent returns on their financial assets, or worse.
“If Bridgewater is right, that means 85 percent of public pension funds will be going bankrupt in three decades, reports USA Today.
The hedge fund stress tested public pension plans and says they have only $3 trillion of investments to cover payouts of $10 trillion over future decades.
Greece Back in Bonds
The Greek government is back in the international bond market for the first time in four years, issuing a five-year bond. Greece has been locked out of the market by high borrowing costs since 2010, and has been dependent on international bailout funds for the past four years. Greek interest rates have been falling recently as its public finances improved following tough austerity measures.