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Walt Bernard Podgurski,  Editor,  440-773-1108, 

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Editorial Mission Statement: The goal of this publication is to provide readers a broad selection of what is being written about the insurance industry and related issues. Some articles may have a “tilt” towards a particular perspective one way or another. Inclusion in this newsletter is not an endorsement of any views or content; but report the various and differing views appearing in media.
  Thursday, 08/29/19 - https://DailyInsuranceReport.com 

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Life Insurance Startup Ethos Valued At More Than $400 Million After Series C Raise
Donna Fuscaldo, Senior Contributor / Forbes

Ethos, the insurance startup out of San Francisco, raised $60 million in venture funding, giving it a valuation of between $400 million and $500 million.

The fintech, which sells life insurance online, has raised more than $100 million in venture funding over the past couple of years. The Series C round, the largest for the startup, was led by GV, formerly Google Ventures. Goldman Sachs also took part in the funding round as well as existing investors Sequoia Capital and Accel.

Ethos is among a group of fintech startups that are trying to disrupt the insurance market. Known as insurtech they are overhauling a marketplace that has long been stuck in the past. Insurance doesn’t get as much attention as a digital bank or investment app does, but it's a big growth area of the fintech market. It's still reliant on humans and manual processes which means opportunity abounds for financial technology companies. That hasn’t been lost on the venture capital community. Money is pouring into the industry as VCs make bets on which startups will dominate.

NXT  NXT Employee Benefits Investor Forum
Founders & Chief Executive Officers
  • Deliver your strategic investment and / or strategic partnership message to an audience of venture capitalists, private equity companies, angel investors, and the venture funds of banks and insurance companies.

  • Presenters bring a diverse spectrum of (employee benefits) technology expertise!

  • In addition to fintech and insurtech, presenting organizations include innovative and rapid growth product and service opportunities in the employee benefits marketplace.


QuickBooks Adds Employee Benefits Into Online Payroll
ByPYMNTS Posted on August 27, 2019
QuickBooks Integrates Benefits Into Payroll
QuickBooks Online Payroll customers can now use the payroll platform to offer employees healthcare benefits, the company reported on Tuesday (Aug. 27) in a press release.

Intuit’s technology-driven payroll solution leverages the power of the QuickBooks platform to help small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) manage medical, dental and vision benefits. Today, one in 12 American workers are paid through QuickBooks Payroll, with $185 billion in payroll payments processed annually.

The insurance component is powered by an integration with SimplyInsured, an online platform that helps small businesses compare and purchase employee medical, dental and vision insurance plans.

6 things millennials want from their healthcare: apps, cost transparency & more
With millennials projected to surpass baby boomers as the largest adult generation in the U.S. within the next decade, it is imperative that the healthcare industry restructures and reprioritizes in order to reach them.

Here are six expectations millennials have regarding their healthcare, according to Joe Harpaz, president and COO of Boca Raton, Fla.-based software company Modernizing Medicine.

1. They take care into their own hands:
2. They do their research:
3. They want up-front cost estimates:
4. They want apps — and lots of them:
5. "Healthy" means more than "not sick":
6. Shopping for health insurance: If given the option, millennials prefer to evaluate their health insurance options online, and they typically prioritize cost above all else — including brand loyalty — when choosing a plan.

DOL Issues Final Rule on Association Retirement Plans
By Melanie Waddell / ThinkAdvisor

The Labor Department on July 29 issued final rules to help small businesses offer retirement plans to their workers via association retirement plans.

“The purpose of this rule and the reason we wrote this rule is because there are a lot of smaller employers in particular that would like to set up a 401(k) plan for their workers, but they don’t for a number of reasons. One is expense; probably an even larger problem of concern to a smaller employer is the administrative [duties], the paperwork and the IRS filings that go along with offering a 401(k).”
Due to the lack of small businesses offering 401(k) plans, “there are around 38 million employees of smaller and midsized employers that are not covered by a 401(k) at work,” Rutledge said.

Labor issued the proposed rule last October. The effective date for the final rule is Sept. 30. The rule basically allows an association — for example, a local chamber of commerce — to set up a 401(k), Rutledge explained. The association will be running the 401(k) on behalf of the employers.

401(k) lawsuits are rising: Why so many workers sue their employers over savings plan
Russ Wiles / Arizona Republic

You would think most investors are fairly happy with their results, 10 years into a rising stock market and with solid gains delivered by bonds, too. But that apparently isn't the case at a lot of 401(k) workplace retirement plans.

Unhappiness over high fees, inappropriate investment options and other issues have led to a spike in lawsuits in recent years, according to a study by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College. The flip side is that many 401(k) programs have gotten better in recent years, partly because of increased litigation risk.

From eight lawsuits filed against employers in 2006, the numbers surged to 18 in 2007 and 107 in 2008, before declining for the next five years, according to the Boston College report authored by George Mellman and Geoffrey Sanzenbacher.

But since bottoming at just two lawsuits in 2013, litigation has risen again, with 56 suits in 2016 and 51 in 2017, the two most recent years tracked.

8 renewal considerations for 2020
By Zack Pace / EBN

The triumphant return of the Affordable Care Act premium tax (the health insurer provider fee).
Ensure your renewal timeline includes all vendor decision deadlines.
Amending your health plan for the new HSA-eligible expenses.
Amending your health plan for the new prescription drug coupon regulations.
Is your group life plan in compliance with the Section 79 nondiscrimination rules?
Is your group life maximum benefit higher than the guaranteed issue amount?
Double-check that you haven’t unintentionally disqualified participant health savings accounts (HSAs).
Once all decisions are made, spend some time with your existing Wrap Document and Wrap Summary Plan Description.


Monday, 08/26/19 - Surprise out-of-network bills are hurting workers’ wallets and employers’ bottom lines

Tuesday, 08/27/19 - Democratic voters prefer Obamacare tweaks to Medicare for All

Wednesday, 08/28/19 - Healthcare Promises: What 2020 Presidential Candidates Aren’t Telling You

Thursday, 08/22/19 - Cigna seeks sale of group benefits insurance business, valued as high as $6 billion

Friday, 08-23-19 - Could next year be the beginning of the end of traditional employer-sponsored health insurance?

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Walt Bernard Podgurski - - Editor