September 18, 2013 / 5:25 AM / in 4 years

PRESS DIGEST-New York Times business news - Sept 18

Sept 18 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the New York Times business pages. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* Among the most troubling questions facing consumers as they shop for insurance under the Obama administration’s new health care law is whether the plans will cover the drugs they take - and how much they will have to pay for them. But with less than two weeks remaining until enrollment opens on Oct. 1, the answers are still elusive and anxiety is growing for consumers whose well-being depends on expensive medications. ()

* With federal prosecutors in Manhattan facing a December deadline to bring additional charges connected to Bernard Madoff’s multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme, they are weighing criminal charges against several people connected to the case, said people briefed on the investigation. Among those still under scrutiny are Shana Swanson, a senior executive at the firm, and Paul Konigsberg, a longtime accountant in Madoff’s inner circle. ()

* The Obama administration announced on Tuesday that it was extending minimum wage and overtime protections to the nation’s nearly two million home-care workers. Advocates for low-wage workers have pushed for this change, asserting that home-care workers, who care for elderly and disabled Americans, were wrongly classified into the same “companionship services” category as baby sitters - a group that is exempt from minimum wage and overtime coverage. ()

* Federal prosecutors have portrayed Julien Grout as the quintessential Wall Street criminal, accusing the former JPMorgan Chase & Co trader of “systematically and fraudulently” masking losses to protect his bonus. His lawyer found another way to describe him: as a scapegoat. ()

* As the White House and Congress careen toward another fiscal showdown, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office warned on Tuesday that President Obama and lawmakers have been cutting the wrong kind of federal spending as they try to avoid the unsustainable buildup of debt that is projected in the coming decades. ()

* Volkswagen AG, the largest of the European automakers, will bring its first electric car to the United States in two years, joining an increasingly crowded field of battery-powered vehicles on the market. A Volkswagen official said on Tuesday that the e-Golf - an electrified version of the company’s subcompact car - would go on sale in 2015 as part of a broader plan to introduce more alternative-fuel models. ()

* Grocer Safeway Inc has gone on the defense days after activist hedge fund Jana Partners declared a 6.2 percent stake in the company. Safeway said on Tuesday that it had put into place a poison pill plan to prevent investors from acquiring more than 10 percent of the company. ()

* DE Shaw & Co and Deerfield Management are among a large group of investment firms that have agreed to pay $14.4 million to settle market manipulation charges by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The regulator accused 23 firms of obtaining “illicit profits” by improperly buying and selling shares, in what is the commission’s biggest crackdown since it strengthened a ban on certain short-selling in 2007. ()

* As the price tag swells for JPMorgan Chase’s multibillion-dollar trading loss, Jamie Dimon, the bank’s chief executive, offered an unvarnished message to employees on Tuesday. JPMorgan, which is poised to pay roughly $800 million to a host of government agencies, is working to “face our issues, roll up our sleeves, and fix” the compliance and control problems throughout the bank, Dimon said in a company-wide memo on Tuesday. ()

* The SEC, which has actively pursued actions by American banks and other financial institutions overseas, is broadening its reach by asserting its purview to foreign hedge fund managers. Agency employees are set to pay visits to more than a dozen hedge fund managers registered with the SEC to determine whether they are in compliance with American regulations.()

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