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Aetna is pulling back its engagement with state-based exchanges. 

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Giant health insurers fighting legal action against their merger plans will get their wish for separate trials. The D.C.-area judge who was charged with hearing the government’s anti-trust suits against Anthem and Aetna said he will only hear one of the cases. 

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Two more health insurers have put their case to regulators for substantial rate hikes for next year. After Anthem’s public hearing before the Connecticut Insurance Department Wednesday, it was the turn of Connecticare and Aetna Thursday. 

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Health insurers Aetna and Anthem are both bargaining with federal courts about the upcoming anti-trust trial over their merger plans.

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The U.S. Justice Department recently filed two lawsuits to block mega-mergers that would reduce the number of the nation’s largest health insurance companies from five to three.

The larger of the two multi-billion dollar mergers is a takeover of Connecticut-based Cigna by Indiana-based Anthem.

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Tens of thousands of Connecticut residents could see their health insurance rates go up starting January 1. Anthem is seeking an increase of nearly 27 percent for individual health plans sold on and off the state’s health exchange.

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Last week, the Hartford Archdiocese won a case against the insurance company who refused to reimburse the Archdiocese for payments made to victims of priest sexual abuse. 

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Connecticut-based health insurer Aetna is calling off its public insurance exchange expansion plans for next year as it becomes the latest big insurer to cast doubt on the future of a key element of the Affordable Care Act.

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Connecticut's Department of Insurance is holding public hearings this week on double-digit rate increases requested by the state's health insurers for the 2017 coverage year.

The increases would affect more than 100,000 residents insured by three companies.

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Single-family home sales in Connecticut rose a bit over four percent in June, according to the latest report from The Warren Group, a banking and real estate trade publisher.

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The latest jobs report released by the Connecticut Department of Labor showed the state added 7,900 new jobs in June, but there was a revision to the May numbers showing a loss of 4,000 jobs.

That leaves gains of about 2,000 jobs a month for the last two months.

The Justice Department is suing to block two proposed mergers between major health insurance companies, saying the deals violate antitrust laws and would lead to higher health care costs for Americans.

U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch explained the decision at a press conference:

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The U.S. Department of Justice filed two anti-trust lawsuits on Thursday to block the mergers of four of the nation’s five largest health insurance companies.

Office of Gov. Dannel Malloy

Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Katharine Wade contended she has no conflict of interest that would prevent her from overseeing a proposed merger between Anthem and Bloomfield-based Cigna.

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The Department of Justice is reportedly preparing to block two large insurance industry mergers that involve Connecticut-based companies Aetna and Cigna.

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The world’s biggest hedge fund, Westport-based Bridgewater Associates, appears to be cutting back on hiring.

The New York Times reports that the firm was known for hiring hundreds every year, but the newspaper cited anonymous sources who say that in recent weeks dozens of interviews have been canceled.

Mary Anne Williams

Your home is one of your biggest investments, but some Connecticut residents are seeing that investment crumble because of failing foundations. This hour, we find out what the state is doing to help those whose homes and futures are -- quite literally -- falling apart beneath them. 

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Insurance brokers are concerned that they may no longer get commissions for business they sell on the state’s healthcare exchange, Access Health CT.

President Obama on Monday called on Congress to revisit the controversial idea of providing a government-run insurance plan as part of the offerings under the Affordable Care Act.

What's been described as the "public option" was jettisoned from the health law in 2009 by a handful of conservative Democrats in the Senate. Every Democrat's vote was needed to pass the bill in the face of unanimous Republican opposition.

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Connecticut’s Insurance Commissioner Katharine Wade said the 40,000 customers of HealthyCT shouldn’t panic about news that the health insurer looks likely to go out of business. Wade said her department will make sure that consumers experience a smooth transition.

The Obama administration is making it easier for people addicted to opioids to get treatment.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced new rules Wednesday to loosen restrictions on doctors who treat people addicted to heroin and opioid painkillers with the medication buprenorphine.

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Homeowners in Connecticut are getting some help for crumbling foundations.

Office of Gov. Dannel Malloy

Controversy is growing around state Insurance Commissioner Katharine Wade. She's in charge of reviewing a $54 billion health insurance merger between Anthem and Cigna, but she's also a former employee of one of the companies in question. Should she recuse herself from the case? And what has been the role in all this of Governor Dannel Malloy, who appointed Wade last year? This hour, we take a closer look with a panel of local and national reporters. 

U.S. Senate Democrats

Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal has written to the Department of Justice asking it to block both of the two current proposed mergers in the health insurance industry. Blumenthal believes the tie-ups between Aetna and Humana -- and Anthem and Cigna -- will be bad for consumers.

Office of Gov. Dannel Malloy

Connecticut’s Ethics Board has said it will look once again at the case of Insurance Commissioner Katharine Wade when it meets later this week. The board is responding to a petition submitted by Common Cause. 

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