Dec 3, 2017

CVS strikes deal to buy Aetna for $69 billion

A CVS drugstore and pharmacy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Photo: Matt Rourke / AP

CVS Health, which has been in talks to buy the health insurance company Aetna, will make the purchase for $69 billion in cash and stock, the Wall Street Journal reports. The merger will bring together health insurance and pharmacy services in the same company.

Why it matters, per Axios' Bob Herman: CVS and Aetna, which already have a pharmacy contract together, join to create a behemoth health care company with roughly $240 billion in annual revenue and substantial bargaining power over hospitals, drug makers and employers. Only Walmart will be bigger than CVS in terms of annual revenue among U.S. companies. The deal also displaces UnitedHealth Group as the largest health insurer and pharmacy benefits manager.

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