Jan 20, 2017

Obamacare repeal could slow startups

Evan Vucci / AP

There has been a lot of talk about how Affordable Care Act repeal could affect American companies, particularly those in the healthcare space. But Sam Altman of Silicon Valley-based Y Combinator has a different perspective: He believes that repeal without adequate replacement will result in fewer new companies being created.

Altman recently emailed YC founders to ask how ACA helped them get started, and posted a selection of the replies. Here's how he summed it up to Axios:

"There are plenty of people who want to become entrepreneurs and have plenty of money in the bank, but they don't because they don't have health insurance... I'm not someone who believes ACA is perfect or that it shouldn't be improved, but repealing it without a replacement will certainly make it harder for founders."

He adds that, if ACA is indeed repealed without adequate replacement, that YC might try to create some sort of health insurance plan for founders in its program. But, he warns, most other accelerators and VC groups don't have the same sort of scale to pull that off.

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Stocks fall 4% as sell-off worsens

A trader on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Stocks fell more than 4% on Thursday, extending the market’s worst week since the financial crisis in 2008 following a spike in coronavirus cases around the world.

The big picture: All three indices are in correction, down over 10% from recent record-highs, amid a global market rout. It's the S&P 500's quickest decline into correction territory in the index's history, per Deutsche Bank.

Coronavirus updates: California monitors 8,400 potential cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

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Watchdog opens probe into VA secretary over handling of sexual assault claim

VA Secretary Robert Wilkie on Fox Business Network’s "The Evening Edit" on Jan. 7. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

The Department of Veterans Affairs Inspector General Michael Missal said Thursday he had opened an investigation into VA Secretary Robert Wilkie after lawmakers demanded an inquiry into his handling of a sexual misconduct report, the Washington Post reports.

Context: Wilkie allegedly "worked to discredit" the credibility of Democratic aide and veteran Andrea Goldstein after she reported last fall "that a man groped and propositioned her in the main lobby of the agency's D.C. Medical Center," a senior VA official told the Post.