May 26, 2017

The new FDA chief has a plan for taking on drug prices

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Food and Drug Administration commissioner Scott Gottlieb says he's figured out a few things the FDA can do to help control rising drug prices, even though that issue isn't specifically part of the agency's mission. Business Insider has a good rundown of what he proposed at yesterday's House subcommittee hearing on FDA funding for next year:

  • Keep drug companies from gaming the system to win more time without competition.
  • Help get complex generic drugs to market more quickly.
  • Cut the backlog of generic drugs waiting for approval.

Why it matters: Republicans are counting on Gottlieb to help them achieve their goal: bring down drug prices through market competition, not through government intervention.

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SoftBank to cut its stake to get T-Mobile's Sprint deal done

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

T-Mobile and Sprint announced a revised merger agreement that will see SoftBank getting a smaller share of the combined company, while most shareholders will receive the previously agreed upon exchange rate. The companies said they hope to get the deal as early as April 1.

Why it matters: The amended deal reflects the decline in Sprint's business, while leaving most shareholders' stake intact and removing another hurdle to the deal's closure.

Trump indulges Wall Street with Milken pardon

Photo Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Donald Trump loves Wall Street shenanigans. Companies owned by him have declared bankruptcy six different times, and he was once sued alongside Mike Milken for participating in a scheme to artificially inflate junk-bond prices.

Driving the news: Trump pardoned Milken this week, with an official statement positively gushing over Milken's role in developing the wilder side of fixed-income capital markets.