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Photo: Lionel Bonaventure/AFP via Getty Images

A jury has ruled against opioid manufacturer Teva Pharmaceuticals, finding them liable for public nuisance charges in connection with their distribution of opioids in New York, State Attorney General Letitia James announced Thursday.

Why it matters: The verdict, which followed a six-month trial that came after a lawsuit by the state, found the opioid manufacturer had played a role in fueling the opioid crisis. A subsequent trial will determine how much Teva will be required to pay.

  • Teva was the sole defendant left in the lawsuit after the state settled with other drugmakers, including Johnson & Johnson and Allergan, earlier this year.
  • James filed the lawsuit in 2019 and was the first of its kind to target the entirety of the opioid supply chain, the New York Times notes.

What they're saying: "This is a significant day for New York state," James said in a statement. "But, more importantly, this is a significant day for every family and community torn apart by opioids."

  • "Teva Pharmaceuticals USA and others misled the American people about the true dangers of opioids," she added.
  • "While no amount of money will ever compensate for the human suffering, the addiction, or the lives lost due to opioid abuse, we will immediately push to move forward with a trial to determine how much Teva and others will pay."

Go deeper

Jan 11, 2022 - Health

Narcan vending machines installed across U.S. to fight opioid crisis

Narcan nasal spray can reverse opioid overdoses. Amy Davis/Baltimore Sun/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Free vending machines are popping up around the country to dispense doses of Narcan, or naloxone, a drug that can quickly reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.

Why it matters: Drug overdose deaths have soared in the U.S. during the COVID pandemic, creating a second public health crisis. More than 87,000 Americans died of opioid overdoses over the 12-month period that ended in September, according to preliminary federal data.

  • That's more than any year since the opioid epidemic began in the 1990s, the New York Times reports.

Why 401(k) rollovers are so annoying

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

If you happened to change jobs recently, you may have tried to transfer your retirement account from your former employer into an Individual Retirement Account or your new employer's 401(k) plan. If so, you probably encountered a bureaucratic gantlet — and you're not alone.

Why it matters: Kludgey processes around retirement account transfers result in people losing track of their funds, giving up important tax advantages, or otherwise disadvantaging themselves and being less prepared for retirement.

The hard math behind America's labor shortage

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Congressional Budget Office; Chart: Axios Visuals

Yes, the pandemic has created unusual temporary labor market dynamics. But in the bigger picture, the 2010s were a golden age for companies seeking cheap labor. The 2020s are not.

The big picture: In the 2010s, the massive millennial generation was entering the workforce, the massive baby bo0m generation was still hard at work, and there was a multi-year hangover from the deep recession caused by the global financial crisis.

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