What’s New in Business News this Week? This Week’s Top-Line News Summary

Welcome back to work, and welcome to the week’s top news, courtesy of BlissPR and our public relations professionals. Here are a few news items regarding the markets, insurance and bankruptcy.

Markets: A host of data released this week should provide direction to the markets. Along with fourth-quarter earnings, a handful of economic data will be released, such as December existing home sales (released this morning) and consumer confidence numbers on Tuesday. Wednesday we will hear results from the FOMC meeting – will Bernanke raise rates? And in the evening we will tune in for President Obama’s State of the Union address to hear what his plans are to further job creation and stimulate the economy. And let’s not forget Bernanke himself as his term is set to expire at the end of the week. His reappointment looks safer than it did at the end of last week, which may help boost US stocks. For a complete listing of economic data click here.

Insurance: According to The New York Times, a feud between hospital consortium Continuum Health Partners and UnitedHealthcare, an insurer of approximately 25 million Americans, could result in a change in how patient reimbursements are handled. At the crux of the issue, insurers want more immediate notification so that case managers can begin monitoring hospital care soon after a patient is admitted. Hospitals, on the other hand, are concerned that the process of notifying insurers early on may be easily overlooked, especially with understaffed hospitals, and therefore the penalty costs passed on to the patient.

Bankruptcy: With the influx of companies filing Chapter 11 over the past year, an article in this week’s Deal argues that the traditional position of bankruptcy as a separate entity to normal dealmaking has transitioned to be very much part of the dealmaking process. The article discusses how the restructuring process is as familiar to companies as going public or raising venture capital, for example.

What’s your top headline today?

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