Health insurance options expand on MNsure

A new health insurer in southeast Minnesota plus more competition in dozens of southern and western counties means more options and a shot at lower premiums for many buying coverage on the state’s MNsure exchange.

MNsure announced Friday that consumers in 80 counties next year will see three or more health insurance companies competing on the government-run exchange. This year, only 31 counties in Minnesota are seeing that much competition in the market for individual market coverage.

Average premium increases from returning carriers will range from 1 to 4%, the state Commerce Department said Friday. Monthly costs will vary by geography and could look very different if consumers shop around for a different health plan.

“The actual rate change that a consumer will experience in 2021 can vary depending on factors such as specific plan, geographic rating area and age,” Commerce said in a statement.

A 40-year-old in Rochester who

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Should You Get a Personal Loan to Pay the Bills?

A stressed woman sitting at her dining table and looking through her bills and receipts with her head resting in her hand.

Image source: Getty Images

Right now, for millions of Americans, times are tough. It’s understandable if you can’t pay the bills with the country in a recession and COVID-19 still a serious threat. But you’ll need to explore solutions to help you get through.

One option is to secure a personal loan. While this approach can work, it’s not necessarily the right option for everyone. Here’s what to consider to help decide if it’s the best approach for you.

Can you qualify for a personal loan?

If you’re thinking about borrowing to cover the bills, the first big question is whether you can qualify.

Lenders typically check your credit score and sources of income when deciding whether you can borrow, how much you can borrow, and what rate you’re charged to borrow. If you’re struggling to make ends meet because of a lack of income, you may not be approved

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Why Has The Stock Market Soared While The Economy Sputters?

Just as our news cycle has been dominated by the two warring political parties in this country, churning just under the surface are opposites of a different kind — the two economies in our country. The coronavirus-induced economic downturn has brought the contrast between the haves and have-nots, and the salaried and the hourly, into such stark relief. 

In the late 70s and early 80s, I believed in the merits of trickle-down economics. I was educated as a supply-side economist. But forty years later, I’m growing alarmed that the result of trickle-down economics has reared its ugly head as trickle-up economics instead. The pandemic has not only made this visible, it’s put us on an accelerated course that we may struggle to reverse.

THE CHALLENGES OF OUR CHANGING ECONOMY

It’s no secret that the U.S. economy hasn’t been a manufacturing economy for a long time — we’re now a consumer

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EVPL’s Business Central has resources for job seekers, employees and small business owners

The Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library has established Business Central. EVPL’s Business Central is a hub, both digital and physical, of resources for those looking to further their career, improve skills, start a new business and more.



a group of people standing in front of a building: Community members use the computer lab set up in the Browning Room at Evansville’s Central library Thursday afternoon, Sept. 10, 2020. The computer lab is open to the public from 11 am -3 pm, Monday- Saturday.


© MaCabe Brown / Courier & Press
Community members use the computer lab set up in the Browning Room at Evansville’s Central library Thursday afternoon, Sept. 10, 2020. The computer lab is open to the public from 11 am -3 pm, Monday- Saturday.

“EVPL’s Business Central is ready to assist you with your career or your business,” EVPL CEO-Director Scott Kinney said. “We have the tools and resources available to help everyone from those beginning their career to veteran business owners.”

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Knowledgeable staff can help guide library users through available resources to build a resume, practice interview skills and get assistance with job searching. To navigate how to start a small business,

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