Antitrust regulators at the the U.S. Department of Justice on Monday approved Cigna’s $54 billion acquisition of Express Scripts, bringing a deal that could help reshape the health care industry one step closer to completion.
Cigna, the Connecticut-based health insurer, still needs states to approve its purchase of Express Scripts, the St. Louis County-based pharmacy benefits manager. But the companies said Monday that they expect the deal, first announced in March, to be completed by year’s end.
The Justice Department said the tie-up wouldn’t significantly reduce competition for services provided by pharmacy benefits managers, and that it wouldn’t raise cost for Cigna’s competitors.
Express Scripts shares were up 3.7 percent, to $95.23, at the close of trading. Cigna shares rose 1.4 percent, to $197.84.