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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - CVS Health Corp (CVS.N) defended on Friday an agreement with the U.S. Justice Department which allowed it to purchase health insurer Aetna for $69 billion, a settlement that a federal judge is still assessing. The Justice Department approved the merger of CVS, a U.S. pharmacy chain and benefits manager, and Aetna in October on condition that Aetna sell its Medicare prescription drug plan business to WellCare Health Plans Inc (WCG.N). That sale was completed in November. Now, the Justice Department and companies have found themselves in the unusual position of defending their antitrust settlement to a skeptical federal judge. Most judges approve consent decrees aimed at resolving competition concerns with no fanfare, and deals normally close before the judge rules.
But Judge Richard Leon of the U.S, District Court for the District of Columbia wrote in an order that he was “less convinced” than the government that the agreement would resolve antitrust concerns, He also has seemed annoyed that CVS closed its purchase of Aetna in October before his ruling, In its replica mont blanc cufflinks brief, filed on Friday, CVS said that the deal had been extensively reviewed and urged the judge to allow the companies to continue integrating while he examines the settlement reached with the government..
CVS also noted that Aetna would be run separately from CVS, including decisions pricing and product offerings, during the court process. In its filing, the government urged the judge to allow the companies to press on with integration, saying he did not have the power to stop the merger, only to reject the settlement. “The United States remains mindful of the court’s responsibility to independently determine whether the proposed settlement is in the public interest and looks forward to discussing why the settlement meets that standard,” the government said.
While CVS and Aetna operate in largely separate business segments, the deal attracted opposition from groups including the American Medical Association and independent pharmacists, represented by the Pharmacists Society of replica mont blanc cufflinks the State of New York and Pharmacists United for Truth and Transparency, The two pharmacist groups asked Leon to allow them to argue against the deal, “We are asking the court to stop the consolidation so that the concerns of patients, providers and consumers can be heard,” said Debbi Barber, president of New York pharmacists..
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Trade Representative’s office on Friday officially changed the scheduled date of a tariff rate increase on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 12:01 a.m. EST (0501 GMT) on March 2, 2019 as the United States and China pursue talks on trade and intellectual property. The change was made in a Federal Register filing from a previously scheduled effective date of Jan. 1, 2019 for the increase to 25 percent from 10 percent. The notice does not affect the 25 percent tariff rate already in place on $50 billion worth of Chinese technology items, including semiconductors, printed circuit boards and other electronic components, machinery and vehicles.
The filing was added to documents associated with USTR’s “Section 301” investigation into China’s intellectual property practices, which has been the basis of U.S, tariffs on Chinese goods that led to tit-for-tat retaliation from Beijing, It attributed the change to new U.S.-Chinese engagement “with the goal of obtaining the elimination of the acts, policies, and practices covered in the investigation” following a Dec, 1 meeting between U.S, President Donald Trump and Chinese replica mont blanc cufflinks President Xi Jinping in Buenos Aires..
The USTR statement did not specify any expected outcomes of the negotiation. It made reference to goals set forth in a statement issued by the White House to negotiate over a 90-day period structural changes by China on forced technology transfer, intellectual property protection, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and theft, services and agriculture. USTR’s notice made no mention of China’s steps this week to resume suspended purchases of U.S. soybeans or suspend a punitive 25 percent tariff on American-made vehicles and auto parts.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - CBS Corp on Friday named the Time’s Up anti-sexual harassment group and 17 other organizations that will share a $20 million donation stemming from the exit replica mont blanc cufflinks of its chief executive Les Moonves following allegations of sexual misconduct, Time’s Up and the body representing Hollywood producers swiftly announced that they will spend their share of the funds on programs to increase diversity in the entertainment industry, and provide anti-sexual harassment training..