Health Insurers Warn on Premiums

Health insurers are privately warning brokers that premiums for many individuals and small businesses could increase sharply next year because of the health-care overhaul law, with the nation’s biggest firm projecting that rates could more than double for some consumers buying their own plans. [Read full story...]

Small Businesses Still Struggle, and That’s Impeding a Recovery

In the recovery so far, small businesses have largely been left behind. Initially, loans were hard to come by and consumers weren’t shopping. Now, small-business owners say, Washington is throwing up additional roadblocks. In survey after survey, owners of small businesses report unbridled pessimism about the economy. The small-business optimism index from the National Federation of Independent Business — a major industry group for small businesses that surveys a sample of its members each month — is stuck at recessionary levels. In January’s report, released this week, expectations for business conditions six months from now were at their fourth-lowest reading in nearly 40 years. [Read full story...]