Global Glance: Fed likely to resume raising rates in coming months; Investigations into Russia to continue

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Yellen: Expect Fed to resume raising rates in coming months

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen pointed Tuesday to a solid U.S. job market and economy and said the Fed will likely resume raising interest rates in the next few months. But with uncertainties surrounding President Donald Trump’s proposals, Yellen said the Fed still wants to keep assessing the economy. Testifying to a Senate committee, Yellen noted that Fed officials forecast in December that they would raise rates three times in 2017. That would mark an acceleration from 2015 and 2016, when they boosted rates once each year. Read more


Investigations into Russia to continue after Flynn’s exit

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. intelligence agencies and Congress will continue to investigate Russia’s involvement in the 2016 presidential election, even after President Donald Trump fired his national security adviser for providing inaccurate accounts of his contacts with the Russian ambassador last year. Democrats said an independent investigation was the best way to answer questions about the Trump administration’s ties to Russia. But Republican leaders continue to refuse to consider that option and said three congressional investigations underway were enough. Read more


Insurer Humana bails on ACA exchange business for 2018

Health insurer Humana is leaving the Affordable Care Act’s public insurance exchanges for next year as it regroups after ending its proposed combination with rival insurer Aetna. Humana Inc. covers about 150,000 people on exchanges in 11 states. The insurer said Tuesday it had taken several actions to improve that business, but it was still seeing signs of unbalanced risk in that customer population. Health insurers have struggled to attract enough healthy people to their risk pools to balance the claims they incur from people with expensive medical conditions. Read more


Boeing vote tells next chapter in Southern unionization

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Nearly 3,000 production workers at Boeing’s South Carolina plant are deciding whether they want to unionize, writing the next chapter in efforts to organize labor in large manufacturing plants across the South. The first round of voting began early Wednesday. A second round of voting was set for Wednesday afternoon to accommodate all the employees. If successful, the balloting on whether employees should join the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers would send a significant message to politicians both in the region and Washington that workers here are demanding the same protections and benefits as their colleagues in other areas. Read more


Insurer Anthem fires back at Cigna

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Health insurers Anthem and Cigna are now trading lawsuits instead of working together to salvage their shaky $48-billion buyout agreement. The Blue Cross-Blue Shield carrier Anthem said Wednesday that it is seeking a restraining order to block its smaller rival from terminating their deal, which has already been blocked by a federal judge. Cigna announced Tuesday that it was suing Anthem and seeking more than $13 billion in damages for what it says were Anthem’s breaches of the merger agreement. Anthem had filed documents seeking an expedited appeal to the judge’s ruling a day before Cigna’s complaint landed in federal court. Read more


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