This year I’ve written a bunch of stories about employers offering better pay and benefits. The labor shortage and “Great Resignation” empowered workers to demand higher wages, more days off, signing bonuses (sometimes in cryptocurrency), even language lessons and financial counseling.
But a new story from our reporter Erin Arvedlund is a reminder that, at least when it comes to retiree healthcare benefits, employers are going in the opposite direction. Prudential Financial will stop contributing to medical savings accounts for current retirees. That follows Malvern-based Vanguard’s move to modify its retiree medical accounts.
It’s part of a wider trend: The percentage of large firms offering retirees healthcare benefits has fallen to 27% in 2021 from 66% in 1988, one survey found. Keep reading for more on why large employers are scaling back some benefits.
Pay TV providers including AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon have all announced price hikes this year. That has some people wanting to ditch traditional TV in favor of online streaming.
But saving money by “cutting the cord” isn’t as easy as it used to be. Movies and shows are fragmented across a growing number of streaming apps. Those services have hiked their prices, too, facing higher content costs. And the potential savings get slimmer if you need live sports.
With that in mind, I asked consumer tech and TV experts for some advice on saving money on your cable bill. Here are a few suggestions:
Subscribe to one app at a time. Sign up to watch the show you want, then cancel when you’re done. This way, you’re not simultaneously paying for several services that charge anywhere from $5 to $15 per month.
Buy your favorite shows directly, skipping the monthly service altogether. Apple, Amazon Prime, and others sell digital copies of entire seasons that you can keep permanently. They usually cost between $25 to $35. So if you plan to watch 10 series a year, for example, that will cost you about $300. Some people pay that much monthly for cable.
Negotiate a better deal. This is the old school way of cutting your cable bill, but experts say it still works. And if it doesn’t, you can switch TV providers if you have some competition in your area. Cable companies often offer steep discounts to new customers.
Check out the rest of my story about saving on TV and internet costs.
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Krasner v. Shapiro: A Pennsylvania court heard arguments in a case pitting Philly DA Larry Krasner against state AG Josh Shapiro over Shapiro’s proposed $1 billion opioid settlement with four companies.
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Par Funding: The only businessperson who chose to go to civil trial in the Par Funding financial scandal has been found liable by a jury of defrauding investors.