Voice-search is becoming increasingly popular in the insurance buying experience, creating a "major opportunity for agents and companies to leverage search and intelligent services" like voice assistants, writes Shane Closser with Yext. Insurers can prepare by organizing their data, making data readable and syndicating their data, according to Closser.
Rising sea levels and flooding from large storms could lead to problems with internet cables, with estimates showing more than 4,000 miles of internet infrastructure on US coastlines will be underwater by the early 2030s in the most severe sea-level rise projection model. Replacing copper wiring with cables that can be submerged and moving structures and power stations to higher elevations are among the ways to mitigate risks.
Ford Motor Co. has settled on a $299.1 million agreement to cover monetary damages that Ford vehicle owners may have incurred due to Takata airbags, including owners paying more than the vehicle's value due to the defective airbags, erroneous safety claims and out-of-pocket expenses related to the airbag recall. The airbags were linked to at least 23 deaths and led to the largest auto industry safety recall to date.
An ocean tour boat was struck by a volcanic lava "bomb" off the coast of Hawaii's Big Island, injuring 23 people on board. The US Coast Guard had granted special permission for certain experienced boat operators to get up to 50 meters from the flow, but now a 300-meter distance will be strictly enforced for all boats.
A California wildfire near Yosemite National Park increased to more than 14 square miles Monday, more than doubling its size, as firefighters contain only 2% of the blaze. The fire is "likely to burn for many days and may eventually become a major threat," says UCLA climatologist Daniel Swain.
Des Moines, Iowa, is buying out and leveling 80 homes that were damaged in last month's flood, and the city has dedicated $1.2 million toward no-interest loans for homeowners repairing other properties. The buyout program totals $11.5 million and is "somewhat unprecedented," said City Manager Scott Sanders, as typical buyouts use federal and state funds, instead of city money, and the buyouts normally take place several months or years following a flood event.
Class-action status for a lawsuit by former National Hockey League players over brain injuries has been denied by a judge citing "widespread differences" in states' workers compensation laws. The suit includes more than 100 players and sought relief for brain diseases and conditions, alleging the NHL promoted violence among players.
The University of Louisville said it will rename its Papa John's Cardinal Stadium after company founder John Schnatter used a racial slur on a conference call. The University of Kentucky also said it would remove Schnatter's name from the Center for Free Enterprise at its business school.
A group of 803 small broker-dealers has written House Financial Services Committee leadership urging support for legislation easing audit requirements. The Small Business Audit Correction Act would rescind having to use auditors registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.
Advisors say they are hearing questions from clients about the impact of tariffs on investment holdings, and this is contributing to a decline in their risk appetite. According to Financial Planning's Retirement Advisor Confidence Index, June marked the fifth month in a row that client risk tolerance registered in negative territory.