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Oct 24, 2011

MarketWatch | Personal Finance Daily: What to do if your insurer won't pay up


MarketWatch

Personal Finance Daily
OCTOBER 24, 2011

What to do if your insurer won't pay up

By MarketWatch



Don't miss these top stories:

It's bad enough that many people are unable to afford health insurance. What about spending years paying for premiums for your employer-provided health plan — and then finding out your insurer doesn't cover your illness?

That's the situation for millions of Americans who suffer from a variety of ailments, Kristen Gerencher writers in her Vital Signs column today. Read her story for eight ways to protect yourself and get coverage.

And don't miss Jennifer Waters's column today on prepaid cards and what you need to know about this convenient — but often costly — form of plastic. Plus, find out why more people may get access to personalized advice in their retirement plan.

Andrea Coombes , Personal Finance, editor

More 401(k) plans, IRAs may offer investing advice

More retirement savers may get personalized investment advice through their 401(k) plan or IRA, thanks to a new rule announced by the U.S. Labor Department on Monday.
Read more: More 401(k) plans, IRAs may offer investing advice.


10 tips about prepaid cards before you buy

Reloadable prepaid cards are useful tools to help overspenders and people who steer clear of banks, but they won't build your credit and can cost you plenty in fees if you're not careful.
Read more: 10 tips about prepaid cards before you buy.


8 ways to fight back if your insurer balks

Millions of Americans suffer from illnesses that add insult to injury by being virtually uninsurable. If you have a diagnosis that insurers don't want to touch, investigate your options,
Read more: 8 ways to fight back if your insure balks.


Car Review: 2012 VW Eos Executive

It tries to be sport but it's really built for cruising, and yet it's clearly meant to be a car for all seasons.
Read more: 2012 VW Eos Executive.


Funding the post-pension retirement

In a MetLife quiz on retirement and longevity released earlier this month, respondents' biggest concern by far was not having enough income to cover essential expenses.
Read more: Funding the post-pension retirement.


ECONOMY & POLITICS

Mortgage refi plan targets hard-hit borrowers

The Obama administration is to unveil a mortgage refinance plan changed to allow homeowners who have suffered steep price declines on their properties to get cheaper loans.
Read more: Mortgage refi plan targets hard-hit borrowers.


Wal-Mart's smart holiday bargain

It's not even Halloween yet, but already the No. 1 retailer is bracing for what looks like a cutthroat holiday-shopping season.
Read more: Wal-Mart's smart holiday bargain.


Occupy Wall Street does have a clear message

The Occupy Wall Street protesters have clear message: We need to transform the criminal enterprises of High Finance into institutions that promote the general well-being of the 99%.
Read more: Occupy Wall Street does have a clear message.


INVESTING

Can bank stocks bail out your portfolio?

For a bargain-hunting investor, buying bank stocks after a 26% rout this year may sound too good to pass up. But uncertainty about European debt and U.S. monetary policy raises the risk that these cheap stocks could fall further.
Read more: Can bank stocks bail out your portfolio?


Congress gets ‘F' on ETF reform

It looked like Congress wants to do something to address public concerns that ETF trading is making the stock market more volatile. Looks can be deceiving.
Read more: Congress gets ‘F' on ETF reform.


Investing in a manic-depressive market

With the stock market staging a sharp rebound from its summer-time selloff, there's hope that the worst is over. But there are plenty of land mines ahead.
Read more: Investing in a manic-depressive market.


When funds lend stock, who gains?

You wouldn't want to make a loan to someone without knowing what you will earn on the loan. But if you own mutual funds or exchange-traded funds, you might be doing exactly that.
Read more: When funds lend stock, who gains?

The Australian | Business Briefing: Caterpillar bullish on outlook


Caterpillar bullish on outlook
Bob Tita CATERPILLAR says it's not seeing a letup in demand for its mining and construction equipment, as third-quarter profit jumped.
 
Copper soars 7pc on China data
Matt Day COPPER futures surged by 7 per cent, ending at a one-month high on strong manufacturing data from China.
 
ANZ misled margin lender, court told
Pia Akerman ANZ Bank has been accused of making "plainly misleading and deceptive" representations to margin lender Primebroker.
 
BHP's $5bn bet on a gas future
Matt Chambers BHP Billiton has unveiled a major new Bass Strait gas project that will lift the construction spend in the region to $5 billion.
 
Macarthur falls into foreign hands
Sarah-Jane Tasker US giant Peabody Energy has completed its 19-month battle for Macarthur Coal after securing a majority stake in the miner.
 
Orica strikes gold
Sarah-Jane Tasker FORMER Newcrest Mining chief executive Ian Smith has ended months of market speculation about his next move.
 
More iron ore sales move to spot price
Matt Chambers RIO Tinto chief executive Tom Albanese has flagged a greater proportion of iron ore sales at spot prices.
 
Financial Markets
Wall St jumps on deal making
Brendan Conway US stocks jumped this morning as investors reacted to a set of mergers and strong results from Caterpillar.
 
Oil soars on 'backwardation'
Gold climbs on Europe hopes
 
Financial Markets Coverage
 
Mining & Energy
Oil soars on 'backwardation'
Christian Berthelsen CRUDE oil futures rose to their highest level in nearly three months as a condition suggested a supply squeeze in the near-term.
 
Caterpillar bullish on outlook
Gold climbs on Europe hopes
 
More Mining & Energy
 

NYT Afternoon Business News: On the Call: Netflix CEO Reed Hastings



BUSINESS

Latest News At Time Of Posting

4 minutes ago
On the Call: Netflix CEO Reed Hastings
11 minutes ago
Turkey’s Struggles to Avoid Recession
13 minutes ago
Groupon Sues Former Sales Managers Who Joined Google
 

The Divergent Fortunes of Saab and Volvo

By DAVID JOLLY
Cut loose by U.S. owners, Saab became an entrepreneur's long-odds dream, while Volvo thrived.

Stocks Rise on Upbeat Earnings

By CHRISTINE HAUSER
Strong corporate results and hope that European leaders were making progress on their debt woes helped lift shares on Wall Street.

DealBook Afternoon Edition: Cigna to Buy HealthSpring for $3.7 Billion


TOP STORY
Cigna to Buy HealthSpring for $3.8 Billion
Cigna to Buy HealthSpring for $3.8 Billion The deal will give Cigna a significant new presence in Medicare and senior care coverage, an area that is expected to continue growing rapidly.
Oracle in $1.43 Billion Deal for RightNow
Oracle in $1.43 Billion Deal for RightNow As it builds out its portfolio of cloud-based offerings, Oracle has agreed to acquire RightNow Technologies, a provider of Web-based customer service solutions.
  • DEALBOOK »
  • DEALBOOK HIGHLIGHTS
    Schwarzman's Roast, in Its Entirety Last week, Stephen A. Schwarzman brought the funny for his keynote speech at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner. Now, video of the roast has surfaced.
    The Vanishing $2.5 Million in Insider Trading Profits White Collar Watch looks at what was left out of the guilty plea agreement made by Drew K. "Bo" Brownstein, a Denver-based hedge fund manager.
    Raj Rajaratnam Speaks The convicted hedge fund billionaire tells Newsweek about his initial interrogation, his connection to P.G. Wodehouse and ola leaves.
    Plains Discloses $1 Billion SemGroup Bid After having its $1 billion bid for SemGroup rebuffed, Plains All-American Pipeline is taking its proposal directly to shareholders, the company announced in a letter made public on Monday.
    The Cruas nuclear power plant in southern France, run by Electricite de France.
    EDF of France Bids for Control of Edison of Italy EDF announced a new offer on Monday to buy a controlling stake in Edison, the second-largest energy utility in Italy.
    Mattel to Acquire HIT Entertainment for $680 Million Through the deal, Mattel will add Thomas the Tank Engine and Bob the Builder to its already robust stable of toy brands.
    Peabody Energy and ArcelorMittal Gain Majority of Macarthur Days after receiving the backing of the largest shareholder of the Australian miner Macarthur Coal, Peabody Energy and ArcelorMittal said they now had a 59.85 percent stake in the company.
    BUZZ TRACKER
    At Occupy Wall Street, Reality TV Imitates … Reality MTV will begin airing a reality TV show based on the Occupy Wall Street protests at Zuccotti Park. Brian Stelter, The New York Times media reporter, said on Twitter that the series would premiere on on Nov. 5, and would be called "True Life: I'm Occupying Wall Street." The series apparently began life with a casting call for one of the protesters to join the network's long-running "Real World" series, Entertainment Weekly reported.
    Workday Raises $85 Million Workday, a maker of human resources software, has raised $85 million at a hefty $2 billion valuation, reports AllThingsD, citing people familiar with the deal. Workday raised capital from T. Rowe Price, Morgan Stanley Investment Management and other new investors.
    Carlyle in Talks on FlipKart Investment The private equity firms Carlyle Group and General Atlantic are in discussions to invest as much as $200 million in FlipKart, India's answer to Amazon, reports Reuters, citing unidentified people.
    Sara Lee to Sell Coffee Group to J.M. Smucker Sara Lee, which has been trimming its portfolio, announced plans to sell its North American foodservice coffee and tea business to J.M. Smucker, the owner of Folgers, for $350 million
    LOOKING AHEAD
    Economic Reports Data released on Tuesday will include S.& P./Case-Shiller Home Price Index and consumer confidence.
    Corporate Earnings Companies reporting results on Tuesday include UBS, Deutsche Bank, Amazon, DuPont, 3M and UPS.
    In the U.S. The House Ways and Means Committee holds a hearing on Tuesday on the United States-China economic relationship.
    In Europe The European Union holds a summit meeting on Tuesday.
     

Stocks & Markets in the News: U.S. stocks rally as global growth views brighten: MarketWatch | Market Pulse

By Laura Mandaro
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stocks gained Monday, bumping the benchmark indexes against their early-August highs, as talk of a bigger bailout fund in Europe, an improvement in China manufacturing data, some U.S. deal announcements, and strong results from Caterpillar, Inc. kept investor sentiment afloat. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA +0.89% rose 104.83 points, or 0.9%, to 11,913.62, led by a 5% rise in Caterpillar, Inc. CAT +0.01% . The S&P 500 SPX +1.29% rose 15.94 points, or 1.3%, to 1,254.19, led by natural-resource stocks and financials. The Nasdaq Composite COMP +2.35% gained 61.98 points, or 2.4%, to 2,699.44. It was the second straight session of gains for the S&P 500 and the Dow average.

Kitco London Fix Market Report


London Fix Mon Oct 24 00:00:00 EDT 2011
Metals
Gold
Silver
Platinum
Palladium
  AM PM AM PM AM PM AM PM
USD 1651.00 1652.00   31.70 1522.00
1537.00
622.00 631.00
UK 1035.56 1036.19   19.90 954.25
965.45
389.95 396.35
EURO 1191.37 1192.17   22.91 1098.90
1109.35
449.10 455.45

Morning Market Briefing


Commentary
After moving sharply higher last Friday, stocks may see some further upside in early trading on Monday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a moderately higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 46 points. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Economic News
Japan had a merchandise trade surplus of 300.4 billion yen in September, the Ministry of Finance said on Monday - moving back into the green after stalling in the previous month, suggesting that the recovery from the devastating earthquake and tsunami on March 11 may be back on track. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
European leaders said on Sunday that they are considering "limited" changes to the European Union Treaty, if needed, along with further strengthening of economic convergence within the euro area. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
China's manufacturing sector expanded for the first time in four months in October, with the purchasing managers' index, or PMI, reaching its highest level in five months, flash survey results from Markit Economics showed Monday. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Domestic economic data released in recent weeks have firmly pointed at a less hostile economic environment, which have been improving in modest steps. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Eurozone private sector economy contracted for a second month in October, signaling possibilities that the currency bloc might re-enter a recessionary phase towards the end of the year, results of a closely watched survey revealed Monday. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Industrial new orders in the euro area increased in August after falling in the previous two months, driven mainly by a sharp pick up in demand for capital goods, data released by statistical office Eurostat showed Monday. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Earnings News
Kimberly-Clark Corp. (KMB) Monday reported a drop in third-quarter profit primarily due to inflation in product costs. Adjusted earnings, however, went up year-over-year and were on par with analysts' estimates. The company also revised its 2011 earnings outlook. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) announced Monday a jump in third-quarter profit corresponding to a 44 percent growth in machinery and power systems sales. Adjusted earnings exceeded Street expectations, but revenues, excluding acquisitions, fell short. The company also revised its 2011 financial outlook and now sees earnings and sales at the top of its prior guidance. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Eaton Corp. (ETN) Monday posted a rise in third-quarter profit thanks to “record” margins, and sales growth in end markets. The company also tightened its 2011 net earnings and operating earnings forecast. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Lorillard Inc. (LO) said Monday third-quarter profit declined year-over-year as higher settlement costs and user fees shrunk margins. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Corporate News
Cigna Corp. (CI) Monday jointly announced agreeing to acquire HealthSpring Inc. (HS) for a cash consideration of $55 per share in a transaction valued at approximately $3.8 billion. The deal is expected to complete in first-half 2012. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Plains All American Pipelines LP (PAA) Monday revealed, via a publicized letter, its offer to acquire SemGroup Corp. (SEMG) for a cash consideration of $24 per share. The proposal, first made October 6, was earlier rejected by the SemGroup Board. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Oracle Corp. (ORCL) reported Monday an agreement that sees it acquire RightNow Technologies Inc. (RNOW) for $43 per share, or a total value of $1.5 billion, excluding RightNow Technologies's cash and debt. The transaction is anticipated to close late in 2011 or early in 2012. (Oct 24, 2011) Full Article
Broker Ratings Changes
Robert W. Baird Raises Duke Realty Corp. (DRE) To Outperform From Neutral With $14 Price Target
(Oct 24, 2011)
Todays WS Events
Caterpillar Q3 11 Earnings Conference Call At 11:00 AM ET
Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) will host a conference call at 11:00 AM ET on October 24, 2011, to discuss its Q3 11 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.caterpillar.com/Irwebcast To hear the live call, dial 877-216-8554 (US) or 973-528-0009 (International) with Entry Code 5621. For replay, dial 800-228-7717 (U.S. and Canada) or 858-244-2080 (International) (Oct 24, 2011) 
CIGNA Investor Conference Call At 8:45 AM ET On HealthSpring Acquisition
Cigna Corporation (CI) will host a conference call at 8:45 AM ET on October 24, 2011, to discuss its Acquiring of HealthSpring, Inc. To access the live webcast, log on at www.cigna.com To participate in the call, dial (877) 419-6600 (US) or (719) 325-4759 (International) using Passcode: 3305644 To listen to the replay, dial (888) 203-1112 (US) or (719) 457-0820 (International) using passcode: 3305644 (Oct 24, 2011) 
Eaton Q3 11 Earnings Conference Call At 10:00 AM ET
Eaton Corp. (ETN) will host a conference call at 10:00 AM ET on October 24, 2011, to discuss Q3 11 earnings results. To access the live webcast log on to www.eaton.com (Oct 24, 2011)
Kimberly-Clark Q3 11 Earnings Conference Call At 10:00 AM ET
Kimberly-Clark Corp. (KMB) will host a conference call at 10:00 AM ET on October 24, 2011 to discuss its Q3 11 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.kimberly-clark.com (Oct 24, 2011)
Mattel Securities Analyst And Investor Conference Call At 11:00 AM ET
Mattel Inc. (MAT) will host a Securities Analyst and Investor conference call at 11:00 AM ET on October 24, 2011. To access the live webcast, log on at http://corporate.mattel.com To listen to the replay, dial (404) 537-3406 using passcode is 21259901. (Oct 24, 2011) 
Netflix Q3 11 Earnings Conference Call At 6:00 PM ET
Netflix Inc. (NFLX) will host a conference call at 6:00 PM ET on October 24, 2011 to discuss its Q3 11 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at http://ir.netflix.com A replay of the call can be heard by dialing (855) 859-2056 with ID 14534453. (Oct 24, 2011) 
Texas Instruments Q3 11 Earnings Conference Call At 5:30 PM ET
Texas Instruments Inc. (TXN) will host a conference call at 5:30 PM ET on October 24, 2011 to discuss its Q3 11 earnings results. To access the audio webcast, log on at www.ti.com/ir (Oct 24, 2011)

Stocks and Markets in The News: Oracle buys RightNow for $1.5 billion: MarketWatch | Market Pulse



By Greg Morcroft

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NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- Oracle Corp. ORCL -0.16% said on Monday that it is buying RightNow Technologies Inc. RNOW +18.94% , a cloud-based customer service firm, for $43 a share, or about $1.5 billion. Oracle said the deal will close late this year or early next y

Stocks & Markets In The News: HealthSpring agrees to Cigna bid at $55 a share : MarketWatch | Market Pulse

By Robert Daniel 

TEL AVIV (MarketWatch) -- HealthSpring Inc., HS +33.22% the Nashville operator of Medicare Advantage health plans, agreed to be acquired by Cigna Corp. for $55 a share, or $3.8 billion. Cigna CI +2.91% is the Bloomfield, Conn., insurer. The deal price is a 37% premium to HealthSpring's closing price Friday at $40.16 a share. The deal has been approved by the boards of both companies and should add to Cigna's earnings in the first full year of operations, the companies said. HealthSpring's Medicare Advantage plans have 340,000 members in 11 states and it operates a Medicare prescription-drug business with 800,000 customers, the companies said in a Monday statement. Cigna said it has arranged financing. It expects to cover 20% of the purchase price by issuing stock with the rest through debt issuance and cash on hand. Subject to conditions including regulatory clearances, the deal should close in first-half 2012. Goldman Sachs is advising HealthSpring while Morgan Stanley is Cigna's

Stocks & Markets in The News: Stock futures mixed as investors eye Europe: MarketWatch - Market Pulse


By William L. Watts, MarketWatch 

FRANKFURT (MarketWatch) — U.S. stock futures were mixed Monday, with investors showing cautious optimism that European leaders will agree this week a comprehensive plan to address the region’s debt crisis. 

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJ1Z +0.13%  rose 10 points to 11,768. Standard & Poor’s 500 futures SP1Z -0.0081%  fell 0.7 point to 1,234.50, while Nasdaq 100 futures ND1Z +0.18%  added 2.75 points to 2,337. 
EU leaders eye bank guarantees European leaders said at a summit on Sunday in Brussels they are confident that they will find a definitive solution to the European financial crisis but that there is still work to do. 

A Sunday summit of European Union leaders produced no breakthroughs, but saw leaders repeat a pledge to come up with a far-ranging plan in time for another summit on Wednesday. 

Some strategists say it will be difficult for European leaders to come up with a plan Wednesday that will be capable of maintaining investor support for equities over the long haul. 

Leaders must still finalize complicated talks aimed at agreeing on larger write-downs for private holders of Greek government debt, a way to leverage the firepower of the euro-zone bailout fund and recapitalizing the euro zone’s banks. Read more about Sunday’s summit 
 
“Anything less than full and totally transparent disclosure should be treated by the market with disdain as yet another euro-zone charade,” said Stephen Pope, managing director of Spotlight Ideas. 

Others contend markets have already priced in prospects for a worsening of the crisis, effectively setting the bar low in terms of what European leaders need to deliver Wednesday. 

“The equity markets are pricing a very negative scenario, so even a mediocre outcome that avoids a messy default in Greece should be enough to trigger a sustained equity rally,” wrote strategists at Lloyds Bank in London.
An intensifying feedback loop between European sovereign debt and bank debt markets helped fuel a steep selloff in global equities in recent months. European leaders have found themselves under intense, international pressure to come up with a wide-ranging plan to protect the region’s banks and halt the spread of the crisis to other sovereigns in the euro region.
On the corporate front, shares of Dow component Caterpillar Inc. CAT +5.49%  rose more than 4% in preopen trade. The construction-equipment maker reported adjusted earnings of $1.93 a share in the third quarter, topping analyst forecasts of $1.63 a share. The company also said it expects full-year earnings to be at the top of the range of its $6.25 to $6.75 a share outlook, or $7.25 a share on an adjusted basis.
Netflix Inc. NFLX +2.74%  confirmed Monday it will launch in Britain and Ireland in early 2012. The U.S.-based Internet movie streaming and subscription service is due to report quarterly earnings after the markets close.
European stocks pared gains Monday after data showed a preliminary purchasing managers index for the euro zone fell to its lowest reading since July 2009 and signaled a steeper contraction in private-sector activity to begin the fourth quarter. Read Europe Markets 
 
Asian equities gained sharply Monday, boosted by hopes for progress on Europe’s debt woes and a rebound in a PMI reading for China’s manufacturing sector back into expansion territory. Read Asia Markets 
 
The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA +2.31%  ended a week of see-saw trading with a surge on Friday, lifting the index to a 1.4% weekly rise. The S&P 500 SPX +1.88%  and the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP +1.50%  both posted 1.1% weekly advances. 

William L. Watts is a reporter for MarketWatch in Frankfurt.