CVS Health

What can happen with the CVS-Aetna merger

A pedestrian walks by a CVS store.
CVS Health bought Aetna in a deal worth $78 billion. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Federal judge Richard Leon is raising antitrust concerns about CVS Health's $78 billion takeover of Aetna, but legal experts say he simply doesn't have authority to nix the deal.

Why it matters: The biggest companies in health care keep getting bigger, and critics fear anticompetitive effects — but nothing has actually slowed the industry's rapid consolidation.

CVS' big ambitions

This image shows a CVS pharmacy sign that also says "24 hours"
Photo: Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images

CVS' ambitions keep growing, but skepticism about those ambitions isn’t going away.

The big picture: Federal Judge Richard Leon signaled Tuesday that he's still concerned about the company's $69 billion merger with Aetna, but that deal is just one element of CVS' effort to push beyond the traditional role of a pharmacy.