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In Brief


Judge refuses to block Caremark-CVS deal

The Delaware Court of Chancery has denied a motion by Express Scripts Inc. that attempted to block CVS Corp.'s proposed takeover of pharmacy benefit manager Caremark Inc., paving the way for Caremark shareholders to vote on the deal, valued at around $23 billion. Express Scripts said it would keep pursuing its $26 billion offer for Caremark.

RenaissanceRe settles shareholder suit

RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. last week said it would pay $13.5 million to resolve a consolidated shareholder securities lawsuit, according to a regulatory filing. That suit combined several class actions filed against RenaissanceRe starting in July 2005, after the firm revealed that certain former executives were being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission as part of the SEC's probe into RenaissanceRe's finite-reinsurance related restatement of earnings. Plaintiffs also alleged the defendants—the company and a number of current and former officers—violated federal securities laws by knowingly issuing false and misleading statements regarding the company's financial state, which had the effect of artificially inflating the reinsurer's share price.

Health care cost hikes holding steady: Study

Average annual health care cost increases for most large U.S. employers are expected to hold at 8% though 2008, according to a forthcoming report by Watson Wyatt Worldwide and the National Business Group on Health. The 8% increase projected for both 2007 and 2008 mirrors that of 2006, but is a decline from 8.5% in 2005, 10.6% in 2004 and 13% in 2003.

RMS unveils model for flu pandemics

Risk Management Solutions Inc. on Tuesday released a probabilistic model for assessing the risk of influenza pandemics across multiple countries. The RMS Infectious Disease Model provides nearly 2,000 potential pandemic scenarios from which risk managers and life and health insurers can quantify mortality, the catastrophe modeler said in a statement. The model covers 31 countries and takes into account factors such as the likelihood of a pandemic happening, the location of an outbreak and how deadly an outbreak is likely to prove.

Calif. comp claimants get good care: Survey

Most California workers injured on the job receive quality medical attention, concludes the state's first comprehensive study of workers compensation health care since reforms took effect in 2004. The workers comp reforms required the introduction of evidence-based medicine and treatment guidelines, but those measures have not reduced the quality of available care, according to the study that the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research conducted for the California Division of Workers' Compensation. The study, based on a telephone survey of 1,001 employees and responses from 1,096 medical providers, along with 20 payers, found that 82% of injured workers reported having access to quality medical care for their injury.

Guy Carp Chairman Zaffino retires

Salvatore D. Zaffino has retired as chairman of Guy Carpenter & Co. L.L.C. Mr. Zaffino, 61, will continue in the role of nonexecutive chairman of New York-based Guy Carpenter, working as a consultant with senior management at both Guy Carpenter and parent company Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. Mr. Zaffino was named Guy Carpenter chairman in 1999. He previously served as chairman and chief executive officer of Sedgwick Re North America from 1993 to 1998, when it was acquired by MMC. From 1985 to 1993, he was chairman of Crump Re, an organization he created and continued to manage until its merger with Sedgwick Re.

DOL must answer suit over rule delay: Court

The U.S. Department of Labor must respond by mid-March to a lawsuit filed by labor groups demanding that the agency end its lengthy delay in issuing a final rule requiring employers to pay for employees' personal protective equipment, a federal appeals court ruled. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration proposed the rule in 1999 after the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission had ruled a few years earlier that OSHA's existing safety equipment standard could not be interpreted to require employees to pay for their own protective gear.


Richard Hynes has been named president and chief executive officer of Willis Canada. Mr. Hynes, managing partner of the brokerage firm's Toronto office, will succeed Wole Coaxum, who is leaving the firm to pursue other opportunities....Cisco Systems Inc. and Apple Inc. have settled their trademark dispute, entering into an agreement that allows both companies to use the iPhone brand name on their products worldwide.