• Euro Shares End Worst Quarter Since 2002 Monday, 31 Mar 2008 | 12:39 PM ET

    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 Attorney General Bill Lockyer formally announces a lawsuit against a Sempra Energy affiliate, alleging that its traders manipulated electricity prices during the state's 2000-01 energy crisis, at a news conference in Sacramento, Calif., Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2005. (AP Photo/Steve Yeater)

    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.

  • Swiss Life Beats Expectations, Raises Dividend Thursday, 27 Mar 2008 | 3:31 PM ET

    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 And Big Pharma: Both Getting A Stock "Booster" Shot? Wednesday, 19 Mar 2008 | 11:14 AM ET

    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.

  • Euro Stocks Close Higher on Fed Hopes Tuesday, 18 Mar 2008 | 12:41 PM ET

    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.

  • Ping An in Final Talks on Fortis Unit Stake: Sources Friday, 14 Mar 2008 | 2:24 PM ET

    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.

  • UK's Pru 2007 Profit Rises 25%, Meets Forecasts Friday, 14 Mar 2008 | 4:51 AM ET

    UK insurer Prudential posted a 25 percent rise in 2007 profit on Thursday, broadly in line with forecasts, helped by growth in Asia and the absence of loss-making Internet bank Egg, sold to Citigroup in early 2007.

  • AIG Shares Fall Sharply on New Credit Fears Thursday, 13 Mar 2008 | 11:27 AM ET

    Shares of American International Group fell as much as 8 percent Thursday on concern the world's largest insurer could face larger-than-expected losses from a credit derivatives portfolio that has already led it to $11 billion in write-downs.

  • Ambac Unit Keeps Top Ratings After Raising Capital Wednesday, 12 Mar 2008 | 5:47 PM ET

    Ambac Financial Group saved the top ratings on its bond insurance arm on Wednesday, as two rating agencies ended their reviews to downgrade the company in what would have been a crucial blow to its business.

  • Standard Life Profit Pumps 43%, Beats Forecasts Wednesday, 12 Mar 2008 | 12:39 PM ET

    Insurer Standard Life posted a forecast-beating 43 percent rise in 2007 operating profit on Wednesday, despite a 249 million pound ($501 million) charge as UK customers continue to cash in policies early.

  • A SPA Break For Dendreon Wednesday, 12 Mar 2008 | 10:08 AM ET

    Everyone's favorite small-cap biotech put out a press release this morning, announcing that the Food and Drug Administration has agreed to change the Special Protocol Assessment (SPA) for Dendreon's Provenge.

  • Legacy of a Crime Fighter Tuesday, 11 Mar 2008 | 4:49 PM ET

    Though Wall Street has been quick to judge the character failings of Gov. Eliot Spitzer following his alleged participation in a prostitution ring, the man’s record as a crime-fighter against Wall Street and Corporate America drew mixed reviews.

  • HMO Health Tuesday, 11 Mar 2008 | 4:20 PM ET

    On a day when the market posted its biggest gains in years, the health insurers got obliterated. All is not well in this group, but there's one stock that could make it out alive.

  • Catastrophes Cost $70 Billion in '07: Swiss Re Tuesday, 11 Mar 2008 | 9:18 AM ET

    Economic losses from natural and man-made catastrophes in 2007 were more than $70 billion, with insurers hit by claims amounting to $28 billion, according to research released on Tuesday by Swiss Re, the world's largest reinsurer.

  • One Giant Leap for MannKind Monday, 10 Mar 2008 | 5:11 PM ET

    Billionaire Alfred Mann must not have liked watching stock in the company bearing his name fall to another new low today in the wake of Eli Lilly giving up on inhaled insulin.

  • Amgen And Genentech: A Big Biotech Double Play Monday, 10 Mar 2008 | 10:50 AM ET

    This is a big week for the world's top-two biotechnology companies and their investors. Amgen goes before an FDA Advisory Committee Thursday about the side effects of its bread-and-butter franchise Aranesp.

  • Seven years after Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway invested $300 million in White Mountains Insurance Group, it is selling its 16.3 percent stake in a $836 million deal.

  • Berkshire to Sell White Mountains Insuarance Stake Monday, 10 Mar 2008 | 8:49 AM ET

    Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway will sell its 16.3 percent stake in White Mountains Insurance Group Ltd in a transaction valued at $836 million, seven years after investing in the Bermuda-based insurer, White Mountains said Monday.

  • Nationwide Financial Gets $2.2 Billion Buyout Offer Monday, 10 Mar 2008 | 8:19 AM ET

    Nationwide Mutual Insurance on Monday offered to buy all the publicly listed shares of Nationwide Financial Services in a $2.2 billion move to simplify the mutual company's ownership structure.

  • Billionaire investor Warren Buffett helps Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., raise campaign funds in San Francisco, Calif., Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2007. Bufffett, who has said he would be happy with either Clinton or Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., as the next president, already helped Clinton raise at least $1 million during a June event in New York. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

    Warren Buffett's big multi-billion dollar bet that stocks won't end up lower years from now gets some attention and analysis in this weekend's Barron's.  Essentially, Berkshire is using long-term options contracts as a way of selling 'catastrophe' insurance. In this case, however, the potential catastrophe isn't a hurricane or a flood, it's the possibility that stocks will wind up lower after 15 or 20 years.

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