A Car Insurance Claim Estimate Before the Tow Truck Is Called

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As insurance companies have pulled their employees out of the field, the use of virtual estimates has jumped. CCC Information Services, a Chicago company that markets its own A.I.-enhanced Quick Estimate app to insurers, recently reported a 125 percent increase in app use since March — even though traffic levels and accident numbers plunged when states locked down.

Even before the pandemic, major U.S. carriers were exploring the use of A.I. to speed claims settlement. Liberty Mutual’s in-house technology incubator, Solaria Labs, began work on an A.I. estimating algorithm in 2018. The company now uses it to give appraisers a head start on estimates.

USAA took a different approach. Rather than develop its own algorithm, it teamed with Google. Customers can upload photos of their damaged cars for analysis by Google Cloud’s Vision API. That damage assessment is then handed off to another partner, Mitchell International, which also uses A.I.

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What to Do if You Can’t Pay Your Personal Loan

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A woman leaning over a man's shoulder as he sits in front of a laptop with his head resting in his hand and holds up a piece of paper.

Image source: Getty Images

If you find yourself in financial straits and cannot pay your personal loan, you need a plan of action. Here are the steps you should take to address the problem.

Call your lender

Before you miss a payment, call your lender. It may be the last thing you want to do, but it’s essential. Only your lender can tell you about any available options. For example, they may be willing to defer payments for a few months. They may accept a partial payment, forgive the fees, or offer another program to help you get caught up. If your lender does suggest a solution, stick with any deal you make.

Although the call may be uncomfortable, it can salvage your credit score. Missing a single personal loan payment will drop your score. How much depends on your credit history and how you are managing other debt. If

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SS&C Launches Accredited Financial Services Education Library

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WINDSOR, Conn., Sept. 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — SS&C Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: SSNC) today announced it has released a new online education product for financial professionals. SS&C’s GAMMA is a digital library of online courses optimized for remote learning by financial industry professionals. The product provides seamless access to hundreds of online courses across more than 30 financial topics, from accounting and finance basics to portfolio management and software skills.

The library of innovative, interactive online courses is accredited with various industry associations and organizations to support key industry certifications and designations, including:

  • CPA®: National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) CPE credits for Certified Professional Accountants®
  • CIMA®, CIMC®, CPWA®, RMA®: Investment and Wealth Institute (IWI) CPE credits for Certified Investment Management Analysts®, Certified Investment Management Consultants®, Certified Private Wealth Advisors® and Retirement
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3 Ways for Small Business Owners to Make Their Vote Count

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On November 3, as usual, small business owners will bring one of the highest voter turnouts of any group, with 93 percent of owners expected to vote in this year’s presidential election. Your business probably shares a lot of the same concerns with other small business owners, especially in these pandemic-stressed times. 

Politicians looking to win the small business vote should start by addressing the two largest barriers to entry entrepreneurs face when starting a business: access to capital and the implicit bias in capital decisions that limits opportunities for the New Majority of small business owners. In the last 10 years, New Majority entrepreneurs have represented more than 50% of new businesses started in this country, creating 4.7 million new jobs, yet these owners are largely excluded in funding. Only 5.5 percent of women-owned businesses in the U.S. access capital from banks or other financial institutions compared to 11.4

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Planet Money’s Adam Davidson: ‘passion economy’ business is the future

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  • In this new book “The Passion Economy,” podcast Planet Money host Adam Davidson explains the shifting terrain of the business world.
  • Thanks to automation and new technology, entrepreneurs need to employ a specific strategy if they want to succeed in a marketplace dominated by titanic corporations.
  • The passion economy rests on two pillars: create intimacy at scale and don’t be a commodity. Davidson’s book offers nearly a dozen real-world examples of his theory.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

 

According to Planet Money cofounder Adam Davidson, American business is undergoing a fundamental shift toward what he calls the “passion economy.” This new landscape is the result of two diffuse factors acting in concert: automation eliminating jobs and technology creating new opportunities. 

The result: a rising class of entrepreneurs who thrive by solving the hyper-specific needs of a niche, often disparate customer base. To Davidson, this new system is the

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ServiceNow launches latest Now Platform, telecom and financial services workflows

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ServiceNow launched a new version of its Now Platform, code-named Paris, with editions for telecommunications and financial services as well as workflows for business continuity, hardware asset management and legal services delivery.

The company, which is gunning to be the “platform of platforms” to automate enterprise workflows, has seen strong growth due to digital transformation as well as management of COVID-19 back-to-work plans. Also: ServiceNow launches four-app suite to manage the move back to the office

“The 21st century enterprise is different. It has to be nimble, intelligent and drive employer and customer loyalty,” said ServiceNow CEO Bill McDermott. “And it has to be self-funding with time to value in weeks to months.”

McDermott’s argument is that the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed weak links and silos in enterprise value chains. For instance, companies can’t be agile when they have a bunch of systems that specialize in one task, say sales,

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Is It Time To Start Your Own Business?

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Kathryn and Michael K. Redman are sweethearts, best friends, and the husband-and-wife team behind Half a Bubble Out (HaBO), a marketing and business consulting firm.

Kathryn and Michael have both taught at the university level and are frequent guest speakers. They have penned their recently published first book, Fulfilled: The Passion and Provision Strategy for Building a Business with Profit, Purpose, and Legacy.  

They currently reside in their hometown of Chico, California.

I had the opportunity to interview Kathryn and Michael recently. Here are some of the highlights of that interview:

Jill Griffin: The pandemic has led many people start their own businesses rather than hunt for a ‘safer’ , more traditional job with a stable company. Can you address this phenomenon from your perspective as a lifelong entrepreneur?

Kathryn and Michael Redman: It makes perfect sense

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Five Insurance Tips To Make Sure Your Business Is Prepared

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Founder and CEO of ValChoice, bringing transparency to insurance. 

With storms off the Gulf Coast, wildfires sparking in the West and floods and tornadoes in the central states, it’s always important to be prepared for what’s ahead. September marks National Preparedness Month (NPM), and the 2020 theme is “Disasters Don’t Wait. Make a Plan Today.” With the pandemic still impacting our daily lives, the NPM theme offers words to live by.

For business owners, the following are actions to take during NPM to make sure you and your business are prepared.

1. Review Your Insurance Company

Businesses and consumers alike outgrow insurance companies. Companies that sell on price may be a good fit for a 19-year-old driver or a startup business. However, as income and assets grow, your exposure increases.

What many consumers and business owners don’t realize is the price leader you originally chose as an insurer

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How to find the best personal loan for your needs

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Make smart choices when choosing the right personal loan to save money. (iStock)

Personal loans can have a lot of financial benefits if you find the right loan with the right lender. The right personal loan can help you pay off a big-ticket loan or even reduce high-interest credit card debt. When used correctly, a personal loan can be a powerful personal finance tool.

There are many reasons people seek personal loans. Some of the most common uses of a personal loan include:

  • Debt consolidation
  • Home renovations
  • Medical expenses
  • Wedding expenses
  • Vacation
  • Moving expenses
  • Large purchases
  • Funeral expenses
  • Funding a small business
  • Investment

While you can take out a personal loan to fund educational needs or to purchase a vehicle, it may not be the most affordable way. Student loans and car loans often have much lower interest rates.

Personal loans offer flexibility. Unlike auto loans, mortgages and

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Six Key Drivers of a Restarting Economy

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As businesses begin to emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic (hopefully sooner rather than later) and try to determine how they can maximize their chances for success, they will need to re-imagine and re-invent themselves. Rebuilding and trying to get “back” to the future will never get the job done.  There are plenty of internal considerations, but it’s going to be essential to also incorporate the major externalities and shifts, which have changed the playing field. Some of these drivers are technological and others are psychological, but they’re all unavoidable and they need to be part of your mental tool kit as you try to figure out how to succeed in the new world of work.

 The desires and expectations of consumers (whether they’re clients, patients, customers, students, or whatever) are constantly changing and always increasing. Up and to the right. We live in a “what have you done for me

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