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Wildfires: The West Burning Out of Control
Wildfires are raging out of control over much of the West. Fires in Oregon, Washington, California, Idaho and Montana have forced thousands to flee. Hundreds of homes and businesses have been destroyed. Those fires have also closed highways. The insurance impact is huge. This is also a developing story. It could actually grow worse before it gets better. The governors of many of the states in the West have declared parts of their states disaster areas.
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Opinion: PIA National Publishes Important Small Business Research
PIA National has done it again. It has produced a document proving — one more time — how valuable you are to the business community and to individuals. You are independent insurance agents. Some of you are part of large agencies and others are truly independent and are one-person shops. Even more of you lie somewhere in between. You all have one thing in common, and that is, the ability to truly serve your clients and to do so one-on-one.
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Commissions Fall with Commercial Pricing
For insurance it seems to be either boom or bust. We all see the softening of the insurance market. And bust in this case means dwindling commissions. Here are some stats from the Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers (CIAB) that bear the statement out.
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Agents and Brokers Critical to ObamaCare Success
PIA National — and other insurance groups — pushed for agent and broker participation in the Affordable Care Act when it was being crafted in 2010. Those pleas fell on deaf ears. Much to the chagrin of the health insurance industry, the Obama administration and congressional Democrats pushed for the creation of "neutral" navigators to assist consumers with enrollment. It didn't make sense because these navigators — for the most part — aren't insurance professionals, aren't required to have licenses and, in many instances, background checks or errors and omissions insurance.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
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Industry Employment: Up and Recovering from Recession
Industry watchers constantly warn of the drain of talent from insurance. A lot of experience is going away and quite rapidly as the Baby Boomers retire. While the concern is there, few companies and agencies report problems replacing people who leave their employment. It turns out; there are plenty of jobs and plenty of people to take them.
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ObamaCare: Four PIA Western Alliance States Most Improved
Four PIA Western Alliance states have seen the most improvement in uninsured rates since the Affordable Care Act went into full swing two-years ago. The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index says through the first half of 2014 the top states are Oregon, Washington, California and Alaska.
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You Need to Know: Cell Phone Contracts Changing
Cell phone contracts are going away. The industry standard used to be two-years. Period. And with that commitment, your provider lowered the cost of the phone or whatever mobile device you picked. Sometimes they were free. MSN Money published an article on the impact of this change on your cell phone bill. There — as with all things — positives and negatives.
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Organic Growth: Agents and Brokers See 5.9%
The second quarter of 2015 was good to agents and brokers. Organic growth — on average — hit 5.9%. The Reagan Consulting Organic Growth and Profitability (OGP) quarterly survey said it is a bit higher than the 5.8% we saw in the first quarter of this year and in the second quarter of 2014.
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Millennials: Unhappy at Work and Why
Disclaimer. Many of the statements in this story are generalities. Please don't take them as specifics. The conclusions come from discussions with 350 millennials by Blackhawk Engagement Solutions. It's a consulting firm that specializes in workplace incentives and engagement. In the minds of most millennials, they're special. It's what they've been taught about themselves by parents, teachers and others in society. Theory is one thing. Reality is quite another.
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Around the PIA Western Alliance States

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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

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The Annual PIA / IIABW Washington Joint Conference and Trade Show — Register Now! (PIAW)
ObamaCare and State-Based Reimbursements: $1 Billion in Question (PIAW)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.
 

PIA Weekly Industry News
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Rebecca Eberhardt, Content Editor, 469.420.2608   
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Gary Wolcott, Editor/Writer for PIA Western Alliance, 503.724.9028   

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