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  • A dose of reality on 'Obamacare' | Business Spectator
    despite the high costs you are still three times more likely to die under the age of 39 from an asthma attack or to have a limb amputated from diabetes in America than you are in Australia How can it be that Americans spend more than anyone else on their health needs and yet most won t live past 79 If you are lucky enough to be Australian Canadian Israeli Korean or from pretty much anywhere in Scandinavia you will spend far less on health care and will still live to see 80 and beyond The latest debt ceiling debacle put America s Affordable Care Act otherwise known as Obamacare front and centre Republicans were so determined to defund the already passed legislation that they actually shut down the government The Affordable Care Act which is the biggest piece of legislative reform in the US health care sector in decades will do a number of things Firstly it will stop insurance companies from excluding people from coverage who have pre existing conditions Secondly it will allow young people to stay on their parents health insurance plans until they are 26 Thirdly it will require businesses with companies of 50 employees or more to provide them with health cover Fourthly it will increase the amount of people eligible for health care subsidies and assist those who can t afford health care to get coverage Those individuals with annual incomes greater than US200 000 and couples with a combined income above US250 000 will pay higher taxes to help cover the costs of the program Given that 80 per cent of the 316 million people living in America already get health care through their employer it is really only about 30 million Americans who the Affordable Care Act is targeting The reason for the resistance from some Americans to embrace Obamacare is an ideological one They do not believe it should be up to the government to tell them what to do whether that is regarding their right to own a gun or forcing them to purchase health insurance A recent segment on comedian Jimmy Kimmel s show saw Americans on the street asked whether they were in favour of Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act Of course they are one and the same thing But watching Americans so resolute about something they don t understand is always funny As you can imagine it didn t stop most respondents voicing their flat out refusal to accept Obamacare However when they are asked about the individual proposals of the health care law many are in favour Since the Affordable Care Act will ensure that 95 per cent of US citizens and legal residents have health insurance preventative health care is set to become more accessible Not only that but increased access to preventative health care will bring down costs significantly and hopefully see Americans living as long if not longer than their Western counterparts The Congressional Budget Office also estimates that the Affordable

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/11/8/usa/dose-reality-obamacare (2014-01-12)
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  • US govt to take loss on GM bailout: report | Business Spectator
    precious user insights if it wants to compete Will Twitter s founder strike social gold twice Biz Stone is looking to tap into the selflessness of others with his latest venture Jelly Enterprises But the just launched app will have to quickly shift into something of real value if it s to become a mainstream success Climate Carbon markets Energy markets Renewable energy Resources Solar energy Wind power CleanTech Science Environment Green Deals Policy Politics Smart Energy Latest stories Marking the milestones of 2013 Australia s transition to a clean energy economy took some political blows in 2013 but progress on the ground was heartening with energy efficiency solar and wind all providing tangible proof of their future potential A fifth year of declining power consumption Power consumption fell again in 2013 dipping 2 8 per cent across the National Electricity Market as scheduled renewables rose to 12 per cent of the market Industries Advertising and Marketing Agribusiness Automotive Aviation Construction and Engineering Education Family Business Financial Services Food and Beverages Gaming and Racing Health and Pharmaceuticals HR Industrial relations Information Technology Infrastructure Insurance Manufacturing Media and Digital Resources and Energy Professional Services Property Retail Small Business SME Telecommunications The Ashes Tourism Transport and Logistics Video KGB TV China Spectator CEO Hub Leadership Lab Management Insights Young Leaders Knowledge Centre Adapt or Die Knowledge Hub Business Accelerators Webinars eBooks Menu US govt to take loss on GM bailout report 30 Oct 2013 5 57 AM Politics International News USA Industries Automotive Manufacturing Treasury reportedly expects to take US7 9 billion loss on bailout You must be logged in to read this article Not a member yet Register today Business Spectator is available on all of your devices so you can access the latest news and commentary where and how you like Register now Already a member Sign in here Email Address Enter your Email Address Password Enter the password that accompanies your Email Address Remember me Log in Request new password The United States government has incurred a US9 7 billion loss on the nearly US50 billion bailout it gave to US automaker General Motors Co at the peak of the global financial crisis according to media reports The figure was documented in a quarterly report to the US Congress In 2009 the US government gave GM US49 5 billion worth of loans to GM in exchange for US2 1 billion in preferred stock and a 60 8 per cent equity stake in GM The US government has slowly shaved its stake in GM largely below the price the US government needed to sell at if it hoped to break even on the investment Reuters reported The US Treasury has reportedly whittled its stake in GM down to 7 3 per cent with plans to sell the remaining shares by April 2014 Print this page Related articles 08 Jan Lessons in liberalism from New York s left turn 30 Dec The latent danger in Abe s amnesia 20 Dec Clinton

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/10/30/usa/us-govt-take-loss-gm-bailout-report (2014-01-12)
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  • Taper in near-term unlikely: Evans | Business Spectator
    a few months worth of data before deciding on trimming its bond buying and that no inflationary pressure have emerged as a result nor has it created asset bubbles Mr Evans who is a voting member of the Fed s monetary policy setting panel said in an interview on CNBC that corporate earnings have been strong and that an improving stock market is explainable He also said the Fed may opt to keep some stimulus in place even past an improvement in the unemployment figure through 6 5 per cent Asked if a tapering could begin later this month Mr Evans said I think we need a couple of good labor reports and evidence of increasing growth and its probably going to take a few months to sort that one out Any move to taper at the Federal Open Market Committee s December meeting he added will be pretty tough Mr Evans noted his concerns over a lack of consumer spending saying we need more customers walking through the door and that anybody who can aid that by just calming down and getting things back on track that would be the most helpful The beginning of any tapering he added is going to take longer to come about given the fiscal drama in Washington If various actors in the economy stepped back and let the business community really take hold and consumers too we could see a big expansion in growth and then we could pull back that much more quickly said Mr Evans Perceptions that the Fed might begin to remove its accommodation prematurely he said is our number one risk Asked about the possible negative impact of that policy Mr Evans noted that the run up in the stock market is explainable and that corporations have been doing pretty well In all he said I don t have a lot of concerns in that area He added that he s not concerned about inflationary pressures Asked his reaction to the nomination of Fed Vice chairman Janet Yellen as the next chairman Mr Evans said she will be a great chairman She has an awful lot of experience with monetary policy up close and personal And I think we ll see a lot of continuity Print this page Related articles 12 Jan Obama picks Fed vice chair 11 Jan US jobs growth slows sharply 10 Jan Fed s Yellen expects 3 growth 10 Jan US jobless claims dip 09 Jan Tinker taper the Fed s cautious path More from Business Spectator Technology Adapt or die Commercial The Future of Energy Family Business Alan Kohler s Family Business China China Spectator Please log in or register to post comments Comments on this article Comments Policy Mark Welch Tue 2013 10 22 09 44 We are in a very strange time In 2009 someone had to do something US major banks were insolvent Bernanke gave them free money which they instantly lent back to him at profit and he s continued

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/10/22/us-economy/taper-near-term-unlikely-evans (2014-01-12)
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  • Obama defends health reforms | Business Spectator
    Resources Solar energy Wind power CleanTech Science Environment Green Deals Policy Politics Smart Energy Latest stories Marking the milestones of 2013 Australia s transition to a clean energy economy took some political blows in 2013 but progress on the ground was heartening with energy efficiency solar and wind all providing tangible proof of their future potential A fifth year of declining power consumption Power consumption fell again in 2013 dipping 2 8 per cent across the National Electricity Market as scheduled renewables rose to 12 per cent of the market Industries Advertising and Marketing Agribusiness Automotive Aviation Construction and Engineering Education Family Business Financial Services Food and Beverages Gaming and Racing Health and Pharmaceuticals HR Industrial relations Information Technology Infrastructure Insurance Manufacturing Media and Digital Resources and Energy Professional Services Property Retail Small Business SME Telecommunications The Ashes Tourism Transport and Logistics Video KGB TV China Spectator CEO Hub Leadership Lab Management Insights Young Leaders Knowledge Centre Adapt or Die Knowledge Hub Business Accelerators Webinars eBooks Menu Obama defends health reforms 22 Oct 2013 3 25 AM Politics International News USA US president says despite glitches reforms are helping American citizens You must be logged in to read this article Not a member yet Register today Business Spectator is available on all of your devices so you can access the latest news and commentary where and how you like Register now Already a member Sign in here Email Address Enter your Email Address Password Enter the password that accompanies your Email Address Remember me Log in Request new password AAP United States President Barack Obama has defended his health reform declaring at a White House event that despite numerous glitches the program is already helping many uninsured Americans Let me remind everybody that the Affordable Care Act is not just a website Obama said after the troubled online rollout of the plan It s much more he said You may not know it but you re already benefiting from these provisions in the law Obama added Don t let problems with the website deter you from signing up Or signing your family up Or showing your friends how to sign up Because it it is worth it It will save you money His ardent defence of the program came as Obamacare faced a barrage of criticism from opposition Republicans as well as usually friendlier quarters over technical problems with the plan The program which had its official launch on October 1 aims to provide access to medical care for millions of Americans who often are priced out of other health care options But the healthcare gov website has been beset by technical snafus Phone lines were jammed and websites overloaded making the offerings inaccessible to many who had hoped to sign up The launch of Obamacare went ahead despite a US government shutdown partly triggered by Congressional opposition to the law and the president vowed that six in 10 people could find insurance there for less than US100 per month

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/10/22/usa/obama-defends-health-reforms (2014-01-12)
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  • The mad hatters at the Tea Party aren't stupid | Business Spectator
    s clout in Washington In addition to blocking almost all of his domestic agenda it has shown itself capable of serial recklessness Yet Obama shares little insight as to what motivates their support base I have met Tea Partiers who say they do not know anyone who does not revile Obama And I know liberals who proudly declare they do not have a single Republican friend Most of the Obama crowd has more in common with bike sharing Europeans than small town Americans They inhabit parallel self ratifying media and increasingly separate cultures It is a surprisingly balanced dialogue of the deaf Roughly a fifth of Americans support the Tea Party and roughly a fifth self identify as liberal With some reason the latter believes history is on its side Gay marriage is increasingly accepted and the US continues to get more multi ethnic each year But they underestimate the Tea Party s ability to put a brake on everything else Indeed US history suggests this show could run and run The closest parallel to today s Republican Party is the late 19th century Democrats the party of the defeated South In spite of having lost the civil war it managed to restore much of the reality of slave society through Jim Crow laws Then like now Americans were living through a period of disruptive new technology robber baron scale inequality and unsettling mass immigration from non English speaking cultures The obstinacy of the so called Dixiecrats persisted right up to the 1960s Another cautionary parallel is with Barry Goldwater s failed 1964 Republican bid to defeat Lyndon Johnson the president who finally brought civil rights to the south The arch conservative Goldwater was a forerunner of the Tea Party His crushing defeat convinced many that the New Deal and the Great Society had become immutable Within four years Richard Nixon had reclaimed the White House partly by converting southern Dixiecrats into Republicans And within 16 years the genial Mr Reagan was rewriting the rule book The past tells us that the future is unpredictable There is nothing preordained about the Tea Party s demise Nor is its sense of burning grievance unique in today s world The growth of parties such as the Front National in France and the UK Independence party is similar to the Tea Party s rise Each country has its political DNA In the US race and class are always hard to disentangle Yet it is also clear that Tea Partiers like many Americans face declining incomes and a growing dread about their economic security Inevitably they scapegoat others That does not mean their fears are imaginary Most Tea Partiers tell pollsters they think their children will be worse off than they are So do most Americans Obama was right last week to say that he hoped the Republican Party s take no prisoners tactics would be replaced by something more constructive The prospect of another three or four months of Tea Party fiscal attrition

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/10/21/usa/mad-hatters-tea-party-arent-stupid (2014-01-12)
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  • Edward Luce - Financial Times | Business Spectator
    cent of the market Industries Advertising and Marketing Agribusiness Automotive Aviation Construction and Engineering Education Family Business Financial Services Food and Beverages Gaming and Racing Health and Pharmaceuticals HR Industrial relations Information Technology Infrastructure Insurance Manufacturing Media and Digital Resources and Energy Professional Services Property Retail Small Business SME Telecommunications The Ashes Tourism Transport and Logistics Video KGB TV China Spectator CEO Hub Leadership Lab Management Insights Young Leaders Knowledge Centre Adapt or Die Knowledge Hub Business Accelerators Webinars eBooks Menu Edward Luce Financial Times The mad hatters at the Tea Party aren t stupid US Democrats may be quick to ridicule the Tea Party but its rise highlights a growing cultural rift between progressives and disenchanted older generations It would be very foolish to dismiss them by Edward Luce Financial Times 1 36pm October 21 8 comments The great American atrophy US labour markets R D budgets and private sector confidence continue to wither with each day of the shutdown Obama can t duck and weave for much longer by Edward Luce Financial Times 7 13am October 14 7 comments A Syrian minefield of Obama s own making Barack Obama has voluntarily walked into a dangerous phase of his presidency The next ten days could see him look like a hero or a fool depending on how Congress and Bashar al Assad respond by Edward Luce Financial Times 8 24am September 02 5 comments Saving America s too small to fails As American small business creation spirals downwards Washington remains needlessly unfriendly to entrepreneurs Why doesn t Barack Obama act by Edward Luce Financial Times 8 25am July 29 2 comments Obama s gridlock is for keeps Almost 100 days into Barack Obama s second term a clear strategy is yet to be seen And Republican agreement on tax rises will remain a unique cooperation by Edward Luce Financial Times 11 01am April 29 3 comments Obama must atone for his carbon omissions The US President s promise of energy security feels hollow in light of a lack of action on global warming In his second term words simply won t be enough by Edward Luce Financial Times 10 26am January 21 The new world of American energy With the US importing less oil and natural gas supplanting coal as the largest source of US power supply talk of tackling climate change has been killed off on both sides of American politics by Edward Luce Financial Times 9 48am July 16 The mad hatters at the Tea Party aren t stupid US Democrats may be quick to ridicule the Tea Party but its rise highlights a growing cultural rift between progressives and disenchanted older generations It would be very foolish to dismiss them by Edward Luce Financial Times 1 36pm October 21 8 comments The great American atrophy US labour markets R D budgets and private sector confidence continue to wither with each day of the shutdown Obama can t duck and weave for much longer by Edward Luce

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/contributor/edward-luce-financial-times (2014-01-12)
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  • US Treasury resumes borrowing | Business Spectator
    as US raised debt ceiling Treasury resumed borrowing You must be logged in to read this article Not a member yet Register today Business Spectator is available on all of your devices so you can access the latest news and commentary where and how you like Register now Already a member Sign in here Email Address Enter your Email Address Password Enter the password that accompanies your Email Address Remember me Log in Request new password Dow Jones The United States Treasury moved quickly to feed the country s appetite for borrowing after an 11th hour political deal lifted the debt ceiling to avoid default data shows Treasury figures showed the government went to the markets for an additional US300 million A312 million almost as soon as the US16 7 trillion cap was removed with the signature of President Barack Obama in the wee hours of Thursday morning By the end of Thursday the country s debt had risen to US17 03 trillion Treasury data showed At least part of the rise came with the resumption of the sale of state and local government series securities which were suspended on May 17 after the US16 7 trillion ceiling was set and the Treasury needed to juggle operations to remain beneath it for as long as possible The US needs to borrow increasingly more to bridge a monthly deficit averaging about US60 billion But refusal by congressional Republicans to raise the ceiling in order to extract political concessions from their Democratic rivals and the White House almost forced the Treasury into a position of being cash short and defaulting on its obligations including the debt A last minute political deal late on Wednesday averted that possibility but it stipulated that a fresh cap be instituted on February 7 2014 leaving room for a new battle of brinksmanship over government finances Print this page Related articles 12 Jan Obama picks Fed vice chair 11 Jan US jobs growth slows sharply 10 Jan Fed s Yellen expects 3 growth 10 Jan US jobless claims dip 09 Jan Tinker taper the Fed s cautious path More from Business Spectator Technology Adapt or die Commercial The Future of Energy Family Business Alan Kohler s Family Business China China Spectator Please log in or register to post comments Comments on this article Comments Policy RObert lastName Sun 2013 10 20 01 37 The US Treasury didn t resume borrowing it increased it It was never going to stop Geoff Croker Mon 2013 10 21 12 31 The US Government is not solvent Full stop It prints to pay the bills There will be no taper from US Treasury buys A normal rate of interest 5 would cause a very deep recession So the print rate that buys treasuries will only increase to a point where the only buyer of government debt is the Fed The US economy needs to grow to increase the employment base A higher tax rate will just feed more zombies Government does

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/10/19/us-economy/us-treasury-resumes-borrowing (2014-01-12)
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  • Fed official downplays stimulus | Business Spectator
    Address Enter your Email Address Password Enter the password that accompanies your Email Address Remember me Log in Request new password Dow Jones Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago president Charles Evans said those who would prefer to tighten monetary policy to reduce the threat of new financial bubbles are barking up the wrong tree The central banker who has been a strong supporter of the Fed taking aggressive actions to aid the economy said that instead of using monetary policy actions to bolster stability in markets the central bank should use its expanding portfolio of regulatory powers to target imbalances Without adequate safeguards excessive and persistently low interest rates could lead to excessive risk taking by some investors Mr Evans said in the text of a speech to be given in Chicago before the Financial Management Association Annual Meeting Luncheon But those safeguards now exist Regulatory efforts can effectively minimize the risks of another crisis and increase the resiliency of the financial system the official said In a refrain common to Fed officials Mr Evans warned that monetary policy is simply too blunt a tool to deal with financial bubbles Higher interest rates would reduce risk taking where it is excessive but they also would result in a pullback in economic activity in sectors where risk taking might already be overly restrained the official said Hiking rides to reduce excessive risk taking in markets would result in higher unemployment a risk of choking off the economic recovery even lower inflation below our objective and somewhat paradoxically the introduction of new financial risks by reducing asset values and credit quality Mr Evans warned The central banker said that over recent years financial authorities have made great strides in reforming how they watch over the financial system Meanwhile higher capital requirements and bank stress testing also have increased the resilience of the financial system the official said Mr Evan s view on the balance between using monetary policy and regulatory powers to deal with financial stability issues is shared by most central bankers However several Fed officials most notably Kansas City Fed leader Esther George have long worried that the longer the Fed keeps its monetary policy stance easy the greater the risk very cheap money will fuel new asset market bubbles For some central bankers the fear of asset bubbles has diminished since the spring Officials such as San Francisco Fed President John Williams have noted that rising bond yields seen since May have helped to flush out some pockets of excess while reminding investors that this current period of rock bottom borrowing costs will not last forever To the extent officials had seen areas of worry they pointed to farmland prices and pockets of the bond market as areas of concern although there was little fear froth in these sectors could grow great enough to affect overall financial stability Mr Evans is a voting member of the monetary policy setting Federal Open Market Committee He reaffirmed his belief very easy

    Original URL path: http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/10/19/us-economy/fed-official-downplays-stimulus (2014-01-12)
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