MIAMI— Federal officials have capped the amount of money scofflaws will be forced to pay if they don't buy insurance this year at $2,448 per person and $12,240 for a family of five. The penalty for the first year starts at $95 per adult or $47.50 per child under 18, and it can rise to as much as 1 percent of annual household income.» Read More
Munich Re's CEO says Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway holds a stake in the German reinsurer.
The world's biggest pharma company is stepping up to the plate again. After the closing bell today PFE announced it's doing a deal worth up to $440 million over time with a baby biotech called Avant Immunotherapeutics.
The resignation of General Re's CEO, apparently in response to pressure from Federal prosecutors, is generating some heated debate on whether Washington should stay out of Warren Buffett's boardroom. See Closing Bell's heated discussion on the issue.
QBE Insurance Group, Australia's biggest insurer by premium income, said on Tuesday smaller rival Insurance Australia Group had rejected a $6.8 billion takeover proposal.
FGIC, whose main unit is a bond insurer, said on Monday it is looking at strategic alternatives to boost its capital and protect policy holders, including setting up a new insurer that would focus on municipal bonds.
In the "You don't say?" file, the U.S. Geological Survey is predicting that California has a "99.7 percent chance" of getting hit by an earthquake of magnitude 6.7 or worse in the next 30 years. This information is used by insurance companies in setting earthquake policy rates.
General Re Chairman and CEO Joseph Brandon, who had once been seen as a possible successor to Warren Buffett, has resigned. He apparently fell victim to pressure from the Federal government to have him ousted.
Berkshire Hathaway Assurance Corp., Warren Buffett's fledgling bond insurer, has received AAA financial strength and financial enhancement ratings from Standard & Poor's Rating Services, the top rating available.
The German national newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, often referred to as FAZ, will report in tomorrow's (Thursday) edition that Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway has bought one million shares of Munich Re over the past six months.
The Federal government is trying to get Warren Buffett to fire one of his top executives on a question of integrity, according to The Wall Street Journal. Citing "people familiar with the situation," today's Journal says, "Federal prosecutors are pressuring Berkshire Hathaway to replace the chief executive of its reinsurance subsidiary, General Re." General Re CEO Joseph Brandon has not been formally charged with any crime, but the Journal says, "Prosecutors identified Mr. Brandon as an unindicted alleged co-conspirator" in a series of bogus deals designed to artificially inflate AIG's earnings and its stock price.
The Star-Ledger of New Jersey this weekend did a story that I think provides the best insight and backstory about what happened last week at the highest levels of Schering-Plough.CEO Fred Hassan was in Miami when doctors dropped the bomb on Vytorin and Zetia at the American College of Cardiology meeting.
Asia will contribute about 20 percent of Swiss Re's global revenues within three to five years, up from 11 percent now, a senior executive at the world's largest reinsurer said on Wednesday.
Warren Buffett's new bond insurer, Berkshire Hathaway Assurance Corp., is now licensed by 44 states and the District of Columbia. In a statement today, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners takes credit for "providing a streamlined, uniform application process ... (to) facilitate the speedy entrance of a well-capitalized company into the bond insurance marketplace."
British insurer Friends Provident rejected a 3.5 billion pound ($7 billion) cash takeover proposal from U.S. private equity firm JC Flowers because it "significantly undervalues" the firm, Friends said.
European stocks closed mostly lower Monday as investors drew a line under the worst quarterly performance in equity markets in more than five years.
California's Treasurer isn't welcoming Warren Buffett's move into the bond insurance business. He's even talking about getting the state into the business itself to compete with Berkshire Hathaway's conservative, and pricey, view of risk in the muni bond market.
Life insurer Swiss Life's 2007 net profit beat expectations and it promised shareholders a fat pay-out after a major overhaul of its business, sending its shares soaring.
Merck this morning announced that it has filed for Food and Drug Administration approval of its blockbuster cervical cancer vaccine, Gardasil, for women 27-45 years old. Right now it's approved for females 9-26.
Major European stock indexes closed more than 3 percent higher on Tuesday ahead of the Federal Reserve's interest-rate-setting meeting, and after U.S. banks Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers reported earnings that beat markets expectations.
China's Ping An Insurance is in the final stage of talks to buy a major stake in the asset management arm of Belgian-Dutch financial group Fortis, two sources with direct knowledge of the situation said on Friday.
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