New York (CNNMoney) - When Americans start shopping on the state-based exchanges next month, a couple of big insurers will likely be MIA.
Several of the larger players, including Aetna, UnitedHealthcare and Cigna, are treading cautiously into Obamacare, waiting to see how the start of the massive health care reform pans out in 2014.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - After promising five years ago to raise the federal minimum wage, President Obama finally unveiled a plan to do so on Tuesday.
In his State of the Union address, Obama pressed to raise the hourly rate in stages to $9 an hour in 2015, up from the current $7.25, and index it to inflation. The change, should it become law, would boost the wages of 15 million Americans, according to the White House.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - Ronald Reagan did it. George W. Bush did it. On Monday, Barack Obama did it.
Each president used an inaugural address to herald his intent to push tax changes during his term. Reagan and Bush were successful, but experts say Obama faces high hurdles to achieve the tax code revamp he has in mind.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - More than three in four Americans will pay higher taxes for 2013, thanks to the fiscal cliff deal passed in Congress on New Year's Day.
Over 77% of filers will pay more, according to the Tax Policy Center. The average increase is expected to be $1,257, but that figure belies the wide disparity in impact. Those making less than $10,000 a year will pay $68 more in federal taxes, on average, while those making between $50,000 and $75,000 will see an $822 jump. Wealthy filers with incomes of $1 million or more will see a $170,341 spike, on average.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - The rich would see a much bigger tax bill under the fiscal cliff deal that passed the Senate early Tuesday morning, but even they would get some nice breaks.
Those making a million and up would pay $122,560 more in federal taxes, on average, according to new estimates by the Tax Policy Center. That means this group, which includes those bringing home many millions of dollars, would see a 5.7% drop in after-tax income.FULL STORY
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) - States would see massive cuts in federal spending should the nation fall over the fiscal cliff, according to a new report. But they could also see their tax revenue jump as federal tax rates rise.
The fiscal cliff is a combination of expiring tax policies and federal spending cuts that are set to take effect in January. President Obama and lawmakers are now scurrying to come up with a plan to avoid this scenario, which the Congressional Budget Office projects would push unemployment above 9% by the end of 2013 and shave 0.5% off the nation's economy.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - States have until Friday to decide whether they will set up health insurance exchanges, a key provision of President Obama's controversial health reform law.
The health exchanges, which are scheduled to open their doors in 2014, will create online marketplaces where individuals and small businesses can find more affordable insurance plans. Uninsured Americans whose incomes range from 100% to 400% of the federal poverty level will be eligible for federal subsidies.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - Finally! A presidential candidate brought up the housing crisis.
Appearing Thursday night on The Daily Show, President Barack Obama said that housing has been one of the weakest parts of the economic recovery. But he blamed Congress for not doing more to help struggling homeowners, specifically citing his plan to expand refinancing for underwater borrowers who owe more than their property is worth. Refinancing typically puts an additional $3,000 in a homeowner's pocket, he said.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - If welfare recipients want to dole out the dollar bills at a strip club, they'd better make sure it's not government money ... at least if a bill in Congress becomes law.
The House last week overwhelmingly passed legislation that would require states to ban the ability to access government benefits at strip clubs, liquor stores and casinos.FULL STORY
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) - Just the threat of a federal default is prompting California to get a $5 billion loan to make sure it can pay its obligations.
States around the nation are drawing up contingency plans in the event that federal policymakers don't resolve the debt ceiling impasse by Aug. 2. They are preparing for chaos in the municipal debt markets and delays in federal payments for Medicaid, education and other services, which could happen if the federal government defaults on its obligations.FULL STORY