Daily business briefing: U.S. health costs falling, economy growing

January 7, 2014 

The U.S. economy grew faster in 2012 than did national health care spending, according to nonpartisan economic experts at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. In most years, health care spending grows more rapidly than the economy. Read more at http://www.bnd.com/business. ...

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Last year, about twice as many people died in natural disasters as in 2012, but cost less. German insurance company Munich Re says some 20,000 people died in natural disasters last year, about twice as many as in 2012. This cost about $125 billion, with insured losses of $31 billion. This compares with costs of $173 billion and insured losses of $65 billion in 2012. Find out more at http://www.bnd.com/business. ...

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Lawmakers in Washington begin the new year debating unemployment benefits, and a White House-backed bill to renew benefits that lapsed last month for the long-term jobless. A White House-backed bill vies to renew benefits that lapsed last month for the long-term jobless. Learn more at http://www.bnd.com/business. ...

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Senior lawmakers on Capitol Hill are also putting the finishing touches on a $1.1 trillion spending bill. They hope to finish by this week. For more information, go to http://www.bnd.com/business.

-- Will Buss, BND business writer

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