Jan 10, 2017

Obamacare markets aren't in a death spiral, say actuaries

An American Academy of Actuaries official basically echoed the line the Obama administration has been using about exchange premium increases in 2017: They're probably a one-time thing.

Cori Uccello, senior health fellow, said:

"Those increases could reflect a one-time adjustment to insurer assumptions based on their actual experience in the ACA market."

Yes, enrollment has been lower and people have been sicker than originally expected, but the individual mandate and subsidies have helped balance out the market, Uccello said.

Why this matters: The more independent experts say Obamacare isn't falling apart, the more Republicans have to justify repealing it.

Go deeper

America's dwindling executions

The Trump administration wants to reboot federal executions, pointing to a 16-year lapse, but Pew Research reports the government has only executed three people since 1963.

The big picture: Nearly all executions in the U.S. are done by states. Even those have been steadily dropping for two decades, per the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) — marking a downward trend for all executions in the country.

Top NSC official may be moved after "Anonymous" rumor fallout

President Trump at the Daytona 500. (Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Top Trump administration officials are in discussions to reassign deputy national security adviser Victoria Coates to the Department of Energy from the National Security Council, per two sources familiar with the planning.

Why it matters: Coates' working relationship with National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien, who elevated her to the deputy role only months ago, has strained amid an effort by some people inside the administration to tag her as "Anonymous" — a charge she has vehemently denied to colleagues.

Jeff Bezos commits $10 billion for climate change research

Bezos at Amazon Smbhav in New Delhi on Jan. 15. Photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFP via Getty Images

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos announced the launch of his "Earth Fund" on Monday via Instagram to fund climate change research and awareness.

What he's saying: Bezos says he's initially committing $10 billion to fund "scientists, activists, and NGOS" that are working on environmental preservation and protection efforts.