A selection of news stories on issues affecting the insurance industry.
The Wall Street Journal: Cigna Earnings Surge; Layoffs Planned
The Bloomfield, Conn., managed-care company significantly boosted its full-year adjusted earnings guidance after posting better results than Wall Street expected. The company Thursday also announced a restructuring plan that includes reducing the size of its global workforce about 4%, affecting 1,300 workers amid a mix of layoffs and hiring. Cigna continued a streak of "beat and raise" third-quarter reports for large health insurers. ... Like its peers, Cigna has benefited from signs patients are using health-care services a bit less than expected (Kamp, 11/1).
Los Angeles Times: Fewer Than 50 Percent Of Small Business Employees Offered Health Benefits
A new study finds that 49% of U.S. workers in small businesses were offered health insurance in 2010, down from 58% in 2003. Firms with 100 or more employees were far more likely to provide health benefits, at 90% in both 2003 and 2010, according to the report from the Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation that does healthcare research. Low-wage workers in small businesses were the least likely to be offered coverage (Terhune, 11/1).